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Connecticut Reaction to Obama Gun Control Proposals

The president unveiled a sweeping number of proposals Wednesday designed to curb gun violence. What's your take?

President Barack Obama on Wednesday unveiled what is being called the most ambitious gun control agenda in decades, initiating 23 separate executive actions aimed at curbing what he called “the epidemic of gun violence in this country,” according to The Washington Post.

According to the White House fact sheet, Obama’s plan includes:

  • reinstating and strengthening the assault weapons ban,
  • restoring a 10-round limit on ammunition magazines,
  • getting rid of armor-piercing bullets,
  • ending a freeze on research into gun violence,
  • providing additional tools to prevent and prosecute gun crime
  • calling on Congress to pass a $4 billion proposal to help communities keep 15,000 police officers on the streets, as well as new gun trafficking legislation that would “impose serious penalties on those who help get guns into the hands of criminals".
  • Making schools safer by giving communities the opportunity to hire up to 1,000 school resource officers and school counselors.

After reading the highlights, what is your take on the issue? Is this something that you think the Windsor Locks and East Windsor communities can and should support?

Almost immediately after the president had released the information, the Connecticut political reaction came quickly:

Governor Dannel P. Malloy released the following statement:

“In the hours after the worst of our fears were confirmed, in the midst of the grief and sorrow over the loss of 20 innocent children and six dedicated educators at Sandy Hook Elementary School, there was one question on the minds of people across Connecticut and around the nation: How do we make sure this never happens again? 

“Today the President took the critical first step toward answering that question.  The common sense measures he proposed today are something that we should all be able to agree on, and I want to commend him and the Vice President for their work on this issue.

“I have no doubt that, state by state, we will deal with the issue of gun violence. Over the coming months, I will do everything in my power to make sure that Connecticut is a national leader in preventing gun violence. We will take steps to make sure that our gun laws are as tight as they are reasonable, that our mental health system is accessible to those that need it, and that our law enforcement personnel have all the tools they need to protect public safety, particularly in our schools.

“But we can’t go it alone. We need leadership at the federal level, and for the first time in a long time, we have it. 

“We will not be able to stop gun violence completely, but we can make our country and our children safer. We owe it to them, and to all those lost in Sandy Hook, Aurora and every other city that has lost someone to gun violence, to try.”

U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn) released the following statement:

These are strong recommendations, and Congress should act on them now—before another mass tragedy occurs. If assault weapons and high capacity magazines were not so readily available, I am convinced there would be more little boys and girls alive in Newtown today. If background checks were universal, our city streets would be safer. There are no longer any excuses for inaction. If the horror of Sandy Hook doesn't move Congress to act on common sense gun laws, I have no idea what will. I’m so appreciative of the leadership of President Obama and Vice President Biden on this issue, especially their willingness to involve the Sandy Hook parents and families in this effort. Now, it’s time to get to work.

Spiff January 16, 2013 at 09:26 PM
Hi Megan, so you're going to put me on the spot, huh? It is a tough call, but I think it is a bigger issue than guns, it's not just a gun violence issue, it's a violence issue. As many have pointed out, many people are killed with clubs, sticks, bats, etc. every year, but we're not talking about banning clubs, sticks or bats. Studies have shown a positive relationship between gun control legislation and gun crime. All you have to do is look at cities like Washington, DC and Chicago where firearms are banned. I think the issue goes well beyond legal gun ownership to a breakdown of society where the divorce rate is well North of 50%, fewer children grow up in two parent families, children have less parental supervision, the increasingly transcient nature of communities, modern day communications, and the list goes on. So, again, it's a tough call, but I'll leave you with this thought to ponder... We're obviously talking about this issue because of last month's tragedy in Newtown. But Adam Lanza could have easily harmed as many people as he did with a 5 gallon bucket of gasoline and a match, but we're not talking about banning any of those items.
Megan Bard January 17, 2013 at 12:53 AM
@Spiff, Thanks again. I think that as the country starts to consider and debate this issue it should start from an honest place and with a discussion. Not name calling. Not accusations, but a discussion. I appreciate you taking the time to expand on your thought. Best, Megan
Spiff January 17, 2013 at 04:36 PM
You're welcome, Megan. And Yes, I agree, we need to start this discussion from an "honest place" to quote you. Unfortunately, many politicians and much of the media haven't been, as I pointed out previously. They are distorting terms and definitions, and using scare tactics, in an attempt to gain support for their position. Although, in recent weeks I can say that I have increasingly seen the media refer to assault style weapons, which is certainly a more accurate description. Let's say they pass an assault 'style' weapons ban that would include AR-15s and other guns designed to look like military weapons. (The key word here is "style" since it is currently illegal for actual assault weapons to be sold to or owned by the general public.) Unless they ban all guns, you are still going to have those weapons that aren't painted black, have a wooden stock (as opposed to a composite stock), but still do the exact same thing as an AR-15, which is a gas powered semi-automatic rifle. All that legislation would accomplish is a false sense of security among people who aren't familiar with firearms. So, should we spend our time and resources passing legislation that really doesn't accomplish anything but chip away at our rights as Americans, or do we focus on the larger societal issues that are eroding our communities. Best to you as well.
Scout Master January 18, 2013 at 04:53 AM
Spiff, I couldn't agree more. What's being proposed will have no effect on anyones safety. There are literally millions of "High Capacity Magazines" in circulation at this very moment, laws to limit them to 10 rounds or any other magic number will do nothing but make law abiding citizens more vulnerable as we all know criminals do not follow the law. These laws fail to take into account that most handguns come with s standard magazine of 13-17 rounds, most any 10 round magazines are a bandaid solution that utilizes the same 13-17 round mag with a filler block added so only 10 rounds will fit. No police department advocates the use of these magazines for this very reason. advocates the use of these magazines for this very reason. If law enforcement demands the use of standard magazines for 13-17this rounds
Scout Master January 18, 2013 at 05:14 AM
Note to self: Don't use cell phone to type replies... My point is if Law Enforcement demands the use of standard magazines then why limit my families security? Is my family or myself not worthy of the same protection? In the end, none of the laws being proposed will stop the next tragedy, criminals will always be armed with weapons regardless of how much the legislators trample our constitutional rights, we'll suffer the outcome. Tell me how an ammunition tax makes our families safe? Tell me how magazine restrictions make us safe? Tell me how banning certain features of any weapons makes us safe? Tell me how liability insurance makes stops a criminal act? It isn't gun control it's civilian disarming. These aren't assault weapons they're modern weapons These aren't hih capacity magazines they're standard magazines. Todays weapons shoot only as fast as you can pull the trigger for each time it fires, same as that old 1800's Colt revolver.

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