Biden Commemorates 4-Year Anniversary of Parkland Shooting, Says Congress Must Act on Gun Control

President Joe Biden commemorated the fourth anniversary of the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, and called on Congress to act and pass gun control legislation.

“On February 14th, 2018, a gunman stole the lives of 14 students and 3 educators at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School,” Biden wrote on Twitter.

He added: “Today we mourn with the Parkland families whose lives were upended and stand with those working to end the epidemic of gun violence. Congress must act.”

On February 14th, 2018, a gunman stole the lives of 14 students and 3 educators at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Today we mourn with the Parkland families whose lives were upended and stand with those working to end the epidemic of gun violence. Congress must act. read more

Former NRA President Tricked Into Appearing in Gun-Control Videos

While we seem to finally be gaining ground on the COVID-19 pandemic, there is one public health crisis to which we appear powerless.

That is the epidemic of gun violence.

According to the Gun Violence Archive, there have been 305 mass shootings as of this writing.

3,044 students did not have the opportunity to graduate high school this year because of their gun-violence linked deaths.

So parents of a student killed in the Feb. 14, 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. decided to publicize the political intransigence by inviting a former National Rifle Association (NRA) president to deliver a commencement speech to the students of Las Vegas’s James Madison Academy.

Except there is no James Madison Academy.

There were no graduating students.

Former NRA president David Keene instead delivered a rehearsal speech to 3,044 empty white chairs–one for each student victim of school shootings.

Manuel and Patricia Oliver, whose son Joaquin was killed in the 2018 mass shooting, founded the group “Change the Ref” to “empower our Future Leaders.”

According to its website, changetheref.org:

“CTR gives the kids of today the tools they need to be empowered to make changes to critical issues that affect our nation, through education, conversation, and activism. It uses urban art and nonviolent creative confrontation to expose the disastrous effects of the mass shooting pandemic. It also brings focus to the NRA’s corrupt maneuvers to buy lawmakers, while forcing solutions which are essential to healing mass shooting victims’ families’ lifelong grief. Change The Ref’s ultimate goal is to give the young generation of survivors and victims a disrupting voice to help lead the way to change–a more peaceful future.” read more

Poll: Two-Thirds of Americans Support Stricter Gun Control Measures

According to the latest Morning Consult-Politico tracking poll, two-thirds of Americans support stricter gun control measures. The poll was conducted following a spate of mass shootings in Tennessee, South Carolina, Georgia, and Colorado. Just 28% said they opposed tougher restrictions on gun ownership.

The poll also found that 76% support banning gun ownership for those on federal watchlists. Additionally, 73% said they would support establishing waiting periods of three days before a gun can be taken home after being purchased. 70% of those surveyed said they support the creation of a federal database that tracks gun sales.

On the matter of the Second Amendment, Americans find themselves about evenly divided. While 46% of those surveyed said that limiting gun ownership is more important than preserving the often debated Second Amendment, 44% said preserving existing gun ownership rights should take priority.

The topic also highlights a significant partisan divide, with 45% of those surveyed saying they trust Democrats to handle gun policy compared to just over a third––34%––who said they trust Republicans more.

The House of Representatives passed 

two measures to expand background checks on all firearms purchases and transfers. The measures need 60 votes in the Senate read more

Tired Of Waiting For Republicans To Do the Right Thing, Biden Announces Executive Action To Expand Gun Control

When Joe Biden was running for president, he promised to use executive action to help with the gun problem in America. While he was initially focused on vaccines and the economy, he got around to the issue on Wednesday night.

Following two March mass shootings, Biden said, “I don’t need to wait another minute – let alone an hour – to take common-sense steps that will save the lives in the future, and I urge my colleagues in the House and Senate to act.”

Of course, Republicans had little interest in doing anything. Following the shootings in Boulder and Atlanta, GOP lawmakers again ran out their ridiculous excuses for why any measure of gun control was out of bounds.

Tonight, the President announced new measures that will focus on ghost guns and different loopholes. Ghost guns are firearms used in crimes that have no serial numbers. Biden will look to create a plan to stop the proliferation of these weapons.

Biden also wants it to be easier for red flag laws to be used. These laws, “would allow police or family members to petition courts to temporarily remove firearms from people in crisis.”

The White House said in a statement:

“As the president urges Congress to pass legislation that will create an appropriate, national red flag law and also pass legislation that incentivizes states to adopt red flag laws, the Justice Department’s published model legislation will make it easier for states that want to adopt red flag laws to do so.” read more

WATCH: Lindsey Graham Posts Video Shooting AR-15 in Response to Calls For Gun Control

Over the last 20 years, the United States has experienced a number of mass shootings. 2021 has been no different. There have been high-profile massacres in both Atlanta, Georgia and Boulder, Colorado.

And the responses to the mass shootings have followed the usual script. Democrats use the incidents to call for common sense gun controls. And Republicans clutch their pearls and claim that if assault weapons are banned, Americans will have no way to defend themselves.

No member of the GOP clutches their pearls harder than Lindsay Graham. The South Carolina senator has been a frequent critic to even the smallest measures of gun control. He continued to push this message today with a video from a local gun range.

The video features the GOP lawmaker shooting an assault style rifle. He captioned the post, “In 1994, there was an Assault Weapons Ban – the evidence indicates that there was really no change at all in crime, because the crooks are going to get a gun!” Graham wrote in a tweet accompanying the video. Today at @PalmettoArmory I fired one of the weapons they are trying to ban. #2A.”

In 1994, there was an Assault Weapons Ban – the evidence indicates that there was really no change at all in crime, because the crooks are going to get a gun!

Today at @PalmettoArmory I fired one of the weapons they are trying to ban. #2A pic.twitter.com/XI985BZ96F read more

Harris Tells GOP to Stop Pushing “False Choice” That Dems Are Coming For People’s Guns

Vice President Kamala Harris criticized the Republican Party and politicians who’ve refused to consider gun reform in the wake of mass shootings in Atlanta, Georgia, and Boulder, Colorado, that have left a total of 18 people dead in the last week.

“I believe it is possible–it has to be possible–that people agree that these slaughters have to stop,” Harris said during an interview on CBS “This Morning.” She then pushed back against the GOP’s claims that gun reform is designed to strip guns away from law-abiding gun owners. “Stop pushing the false choice that this means everybody’s trying to come after your guns,” she said. “That is not what we’re talking about.”

Harris urged Congress to take action and address gun violence.

“It is time for Congress to act and stop with the false choices. This is not about getting rid of the 2nd Amendment, it’s simply about saying we need reasonable gun safety laws,” Harris said.

You can watch Harris’s interview below.

#EXCLUSIVE: @VP @KamalaHarris joins @CBSThisMorning to discuss the recent mass shootings in the U.S. and the Biden administration's plan to tackle gun control. pic.twitter.com/FBNhqh84sb

— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning)

March 24, 2021 read more

Senator Chris Murphy on Mass Shootings: “Congress Has Become Complicit in These Crimes”

Senator Chris Murphy criticized his colleagues for their inaction on gun reform measures just two days after a gunman killed 10 people at a supermarket in Boulder, Colorado.

“I have just come to the conclusion that Congress has become complicit in these crimes,” Murphy (D-Conn.) told MSNBC. “When Congress doesn’t act, it sends an unintentional but very real sign of endorsement to these would-be killers. It looks like we’re approving the way in which they are managing their grievances, because we don’t do anything year after year.”

“I know a lot of people count us out [and] think that the politics are still the same as they were a decade ago,” Murphy continued. “I don’t think they are. I’ve talked to a lot of Republicans read more

Dick Durbin Says He “Can’t Keep Up With” Sheer Number of Mass Shootings

Senator Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), who serves as the Senate Judiciary Chairman, called the recent mass shooting in Boulder, Colorado, “devastating,” noting that he “can’t keep up with” the sheer number of mass shootings that happen in the United States annually.

“I can’t keep up with it,” he said during his opening statement at a committee hearing on gun violence. “I can’t change and amend my opening statement to keep up with it. It just keeps coming at us. We are numb to the numbers. Unless we are personally touched, it’s just another statistic. That has got to stop.” 

Durbin said that even as the country faces “a pandemic of coronavirus, we have another epidemic in America called guns.”

“I could ask for a moment of silence for the mass shooting in Boulder last night, and after that is completed I could ask for a moment of silence for the shooting in Atlanta six days ago, and after a minute, I could ask for a moment of silence for the 29 mass shootings that occurred this month in the United States,” he said. “But in addition to a moment of silence I would like to ask for a moment of action, a moment of real caring, a moment when we don’t allow others to do what we need to do. Prayer leaders have their important place in this, but we are Senate leaders. What are we doing? What are we doing, other than reflecting and praying? That’s a good starting point, that shouldn’t be our endpoint.” 

You can hear Durbin’s remarks in the video below.

Senate Jud. Cmte. Chair Durbin at gun violence hearing:

"We face a pandemic of coronavirus. We have another epidemic in America called guns … Prayer leaders have their important place in this. But we are Senate leaders … What are we doing, other than reflecting and praying?" pic.twitter.com/0TyL09kEsJ read more

Colorado Congressman Jason Crow Calls for Gun Control in Wake of Mass Shooting

Representative Jason Crow (D-Co.) is calling for comprehensive gun control measures in the wake of yesterday’s mass shooting in Boulder, which resulted in ten deaths.

“There are common sense laws and legislation that we can pass that will help make our communities safer. We just have to get them done. It’s that simple,” he told CNN’s John Berman during an appearance on “New Day.” read more

Gabrielle Giffords’s Gun Violence Prevention Advocacy Group Launches Ad Campaign Supporting Universal Background Checks

Giffords, the gun violence prevention advocacy group created by gun violence survivor and former Representative Gabrielle Giffords (D-Ariz.), has launched a new ad campaign to pressure Republicans in the Senate to support a measure that would expand background checks on all firearms purchases.

“That’s why we’ve marched, organized, and won. Almost nothing has support from both parties but universal background checks does,” the ad says. “So will the Senate have the courage to act or does the corporate gun lobby still scare them?”

Last week, the House of Representatives passed two measures to expand background checks on all firearms purchases and transfers. The measure needs 60 votes in the Senate. If approved, it would also expand the review time for gun purchases to 10 days.

Earlier this month, a bill to expand federal background checks on all gun sales was reintroduced in the Senate by Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.).

For the bill to pass the Senate, all 50 Democrats need to be on board. They would also need to secure 10 votes across the aisle to overcome the legislative filibuster.

The news of the new ad campaign comes after a gunman shot and killed eight people at three Atlanta-area spas last night. Authorities arrested a 21-year-old male suspect after a brief manhunt.

“As facts continue coming in, it is clear that guns are too often weaponized as a tool of hate,” Giffords said in a statement on Twitter. “This must end.”

We are heartbroken over the shootings in Georgia that killed eight and left one wounded.

As facts continue coming in, it is clear that guns are too often weaponized as a tool of hate. This must end. https://t.co/QUvNZpyujw read more

House Set to Pass Measures to Expand Background Checks on All Firearms Purchases

The Democrat-led House of Representatives is set to pass two measures to expand background checks on all firearms purchases and transfers. It would also expand the review time for gun purchases to 10 days. The bills will advance to the Senate, though they require significant bipartisan support to pass.

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said the legislation is necessary to address a crisis of mass shootings nationwide.

“The gun violence crisis in America is a challenge to the conscience of our country – one that demands that we act,” Pelosi said during floor debate. “These solutions will save lives.”

It took the Covid-19 pandemic to significantly slow the pace of mass shootings. A December 2020 report from The Associated Press indicated that there were just two mass shootings last year and that both happened before state lockdowns were largely implemented.

Last week, a bill to expand federal background checks on all gun sales was reintroduced in the Senate by Senator

Chris Murphy read more

Bill to Expand Federal Background Checks on All Gun Sales Reintroduced in the Senate

A bill to expand federal background checks on all gun sales has been reintroduced in the Senate by Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.). The bill, the Background Check Expansion Act, was also reintroduced in the House by Representative Mike Thompson (D-Calif.).

The Democrat-controlled House passed the Bipartisan Background Checks Act in 2019 but the legislation was never taken up by the Senate, which at the time was controlled by Republicans

For the bill to pass the Senate, all 50 Democrats need to be on board. They would also need to secure 10 votes across the aisle to overcome the legislative filibuster.

Joe Biden and hundreds of congressional candidates from both parties ran on the issue of background checks. This is the year to get this bill passed into law. And this legislation has the chance to bring this country together – even 85 percent of gun owners believe in expanding background checks, and a growing anti-gun violence movement, made up of both Democrats and Republicans, is demanding change,” Murphy said in a press release.

It’s not complicated – universal background checks are supported by 95% of Americans and will save thousands of lives,” he also wrote on Twitter.

BIG NEWS: Today we reintroduce the Background Check Expansion Act.

It's not complicated – universal background checks are supported by 95% of Americans and will save thousands of lives.

Please RT this explainer video if you support expanded background checks. pic.twitter.com/q1cAEiHNNd read more

Donald Trump Jr. Falsely Claims Biden’s Campaign is “The Most Anti-2nd Amendment in History”

Donald Trump Jr Republican convention speech

Donald Trump Jr. claimed Democrat Joe Biden’s campaign is “the most anti-2nd Amendment Presidential ticket in history.”

“Make no mistake about it: The radical left is coming for your guns!!!” he wrote.

Joe Biden and Kamala Harris want to take away your right to defend yourself and your family. They are the most anti-2nd Amendment Presidential ticket in history.

Make no mistake about it: The radical left is coming for your guns!!! pic.twitter.com/Nef1aJZBxi read more

Trump Claims The Second Amendment is “DEAD” If Biden Wins Election

Undecided voters call Trump a crackhead after watching debate

President Donald Trump claimed the Constitution’s Second Amendment is “DEAD” if his rival Joe Biden wins November’s general election.

Is that what you want from a leader? He will destroy our Country! VOTE NOW USA,” Trump wrote.

In the same message, the president claimed Biden will be “ruining” the Supreme Court if Democrats expand the number of justices on the bench. He also said Biden would kill “our Energy business, and JOBS” due to his opposition to fracking. (Biden has not “called for banning the practice entirely,” according to Politifact.)

Biden wants to Pack the Supreme Court, thereby ruining it. Also, he wants no fracking, killing our Energy business, and JOBS. Second Amendment is DEAD if Biden gets in! Is that what you want from a leader? He will destroy our Country! VOTE NOW USA. read more

New House Democrats Have Their Sights Set On Gun Control

Sarah Palin sounded the alarm on Twitter when she wrote:

“Here They Come: Dems Planning ‘Aggressive’ Gun Control Push When They Take Over House”

Of course, Palin thinks it is a bad thing for people to actually talk about putting any limitations on gun ownership. But the former Republican vice presidential candidate is increasingly in the minority in this country as the majority of voters now favor some types of gun control.

On election day dozens of candidates who campaigned on a platform of imposing new gun control laws were elected to public office. These candidates were from from all over the country, showing that it is no longer a regional issue, but is a true national issue.

The results of the midterm elections also show that more people are not afraid to take on

the National Rifle Association (NRA) read more

NRA Election Spending Is Cut In Half As Gun Debate Changes

So far this year the National Rifle Association (NRA) has spent just $11 million on midterm races, less than half of the amount of money it spent on the midterms in 2014.

The National Rifle Association, long seen as a kingmaker in Republican politics, is taking a lower profile in this year's midterm campaign. It has put $11 million into midterm races this year, less than half of what it spent four years ago. https://t.co/brhX3jh0Pa read more

Rabbi Trashes Trump for Blaming Synagogue Deaths on Lack of Security

A leading Jewish rabbi expressed the feelings of millions of Americans when he appeared on CNN and criticized President Donald Trump for some of his remarks which followed the mass murder in Pittsburgh on Saturday.

Rabbi Joshua Stanton directly responded to Trump who had blamed the death toll in the synagogue massacre to a lack of security.

“This is a case where if they had an armed guard inside, they might have been able to stop him immediately,” Trump said when talking to reporters after the shooting. “If they had protection inside, the results would have been far better.”

Stanton said this on CNN about Trump’s ill-considered remarks:

“The words that I heard from our president today were deeply disappointing. He had one job, to provide comfort for those that were mourning, and instead, his words sounded to me like an advertisement for gun companies… In our tradition that is seen as one of the highest acts of kindness is to be with those who are heartbroken and grieving, and instead, we just heard more empty rhetoric from a person who is already engaged in anti-Semitic dog whistles. I was hurt. I was offended, and I was deeply saddened as a human being, a Jewish person, and an American, and a rabbi.”

He also said that Trump’s comments felt like blaming of the victims, which was absolutely true.

“It felt like victim blaming to me,” Stanton said. “I was appalled and I was saddened. His job was to comfort victims. Not to blame victims.”

Many on social media expressed their support for the words of Rabbi Stanton. One person tweeted:

“Listened to Rabbi Stanton on #CNN in the wake of the #synagogueshooting – The world needs more people like Rabbi Joshua Stanton. Let’s all fight to defeat right wing terrorism and republicans who support hate.”

Listened to Rabbi Stanton on #CNN in the wake of the #synagogueshooting – The world needs more people like Rabbi Joshua Stanton. Let’s all fight to defeat right wing terrorism and republicans who support hate read more

Six New Gun Control Laws Signed Into Law by New Jersey Governor

New Jersey Democratic Governor Phil Murphy signed a half-dozen new gun control laws on Wednesday, tightening the Garden State’s already tough gun statutes.

Murphy signed the new laws in Trenton surrounded by the Democratic legislative leaders who got the legislation passed after the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida on Valentine’s Day that left 17 people dead.

Alfonso Calderon, a student from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland was on stage with Murphy. Both of them said they hoped voters would go to the polls this fall to elect candidates who have expressed support for what they call “common sense gun legislation.”

“The majority of America’s youth knows we need this change to survive in our own schools,” Calderon said.

The new laws will:

  • Require a mental health professionals to warn law enforcement if a patient threatens serious violence against themselves or others
  • Allow for an extreme risk protective order if a court deems someone poses a significant danger to themselves or others. The temporary court order bars the subject from possessing or purchasing a firearm or ammunition.
  • Require background checks for private gun sales
  • Lower the magazine capacity from 15 rounds to 10, with an exception for a popular .22-caliber rifle.
  • Require residents to show a “justifiable need” to get a carry permit.
  • Prohibit body-armor-penetrating ammunition.

Gun control advocates quickly went on social media applaud the new laws:

New Jersey has just implemented 6 Gun Control Measures including:
—Background checks for private gun sales
—Lower magazine capacity to 10
—Residents must show “justifiable need” to get a carry permit
—No body-armor-penetrating ammunition
NJ Should be a Model for the Nation

New Jersey has just implemented 6 Gun Control Measures including:

—Background checks for private gun sales

—Lower magazine capacity to 10

—Residents must show "justifiable need" to get a carry permit

—No body-armor-penetrating ammunition

NJ Should be a Model for the Nation read more

Amazing Waffle House Shooting Hero Raises Nearly $200,000

According to James Shaw Jr he is not a hero, but in the eyes of millions he is.  He’s the guy who took away the automatic rifle of the Waffle House shooter in Antioch, TN who killed four people and would have killed more if not for Shaw’s actions.

On Tuesday the mayor of Nashville held a ceremony for Shaw at the Tennessee state capitol grounds.  He read the following resolution, confirming Shaw’s status as a hero:

“If a hero is ‘a person noted for courageous acts or nobility of character,’ then James Shaw Jr. is a hero twice over, for he has demonstrated both his courage and character in a manner few could ever attempt to emulate.”

Afterwards Shaw said something truly amazing because it is so humble yet also honest.  Not only did he say that he does not consider himself a hero, but he also said he wasn’t trying to save the lives of others—he was trying to save his own. Who admits something like that? 

Shaw called what happened “a life-changing moment,” and said, “I’m going to try to use this moment as a platform to bring awareness to shootings and just violence.”

Shaw sustained a gunshot wound and burns when he grabbed the assault-style rifle away from a gunman who opened fire at the restaurant last week.  But in true humble fashion he was concerned about the families of the victims, so he set up a GoFundMe page. His initial goal was to raise $15,000 for them.

On the page he wrote: “My name is James Shaw Jr. I am creating this page to help the families of the victims from the Shooting that took place at Waffle House in Antioch, TN. Please take the time to donate as all of the proceeds will be given to the families. Thank you again for your generosity and blessings!”

As of this writing the total raised by Shaw is about $190,000 and is still climbing.

Another GoFundMe page was established for Shaw and his daughter by reporter Yashar Ali.

“James Shaw Jr. put his life on the line when he took on the gunman who killed four people at a Nashville area Waffle House. Since that horrific shooting, he has raised tens of thousands of dollars for the victims and shown a level of humility that has inspired many of us,” Ali wrote. read more

Bayer 16th Co. to Drop Ingraham As Gun Control Issue Looms in Midterms

Bayer AG, the massive German conglomerate, confirmed Saturday that the company will no longer be spending ad dollars to support Laura Ingraham’s Fox News show.

Bayer  is at least the 16th company to withdraw sponsorship from “The Ingraham Angle” after the abrasive host attacked Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg last week.

“Bayer US has stopped advertising on Laura Ingraham and we have no plans to resume any time in the future,” the company wrote in a tweet.

After Ingraham mocked Hogg for his college rejections on Twitter, the 17-year-old sent out his own tweet with a list of companies sponsoring Ingraham’s show.  The public pressure and bad publicity made almost all of them withdraw as sponsors.

Ingraham tried apologizing to Hogg, but he said he would not accept it, and he has since doubled down on his critique of Ingraham, saying that “a bully is a bully.”  “I think now with advertisers standing with us, we can accomplish anything,” Hogg said Saturday.  Ingraham also announced Saturday she will be taking a break from her show.

Meanwhile, Democrats are now embracing the gun control issue on the campaign trail.  They seem to think that the political winds have changed, even though Congress probably won’t pass any new gun control laws before the November elections.

Political strategists and pollsters say there is now more apparent public support for gun reform than there has ever been, so for Democrats to focus on this hot-button issue is a smart move.  The mass murder of 17 people in Parkland, Florida on Valentine’s day was a catalyst that seems to have changed public opinion as well as sparking massive anti-gun protests throughout the country on March 24th.

The shooting seems to have caused a major shift in the politics of the gun debate, and Democrats are no longer afraid of the NRA or afraid to speak up on the issue.  They have been helped by the Parkland students who have proven to be very media-savvy as they have managed to keep the gun control issue in the public eye and thus in the public debate for the 2018 campaign season.

The new polls and the massive demonstrations have strengthened Democrats’ resolve to embrace gun reform as not only smart policy but also a position that will pay off with electoral victories.

“This is going to be a serious issue in the elections. … Either we change laws or we change who’s in Congress. The kids get that,” said Rep. Elizabeth Esty (D-Conn.). “The Republicans, as they have for five years, can just keep stuff off the floor [but] they can’t keep everybody out of the voting booth. So they do that at their peril.”

Rep.

Ted Deutch read more

The Good Samaritan And The March For Our Lives

While the Samaritan was the surprising character to show mercy to the man left for dead in the ditch, the real twist came when Jesus asked the lawyer to lay aside his privilege and see the world though the beaten and bruised eyes of a man desperate to save his life.