The students who survived Wednesday’s stunning massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland are calling “BS” to the politicians who have shucked and jived, dodged and taken a dive on the issue of gun control.
We’re calling BS, too. And so should anyone who is livid, weary of gun violence, whether it’s neighborhood shootouts between gangs, where 5-year-olds die in the crossfire, or sickening mass murders at schools, theaters, malls, anywhere.
Too many elected officials, however, don’t want to talk about banning assault weapons or letting the CDC study the link between mental illness and gun violence. Congress wants to remain ignorant and has muzzled the agency.
President Trump last year signed the repeal of a post-Sandy Hook Obama regulation that would have kept some categories of mentally ill citizens from buying firearms. It had expanded the data available for background checks. Trump won’t release photos of himself signing the repeal.
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Here are the words of some political roadblocks to sane gun laws. Read what they have to say. Then have your say. Call them — and call them out!
Presidential candidate Donald Trump
▪ What he said: “The guns don't pull the trigger. It’s the people that pull the trigger …You get the Congress. You get the Senate. You get together. You do legislation.”
▪ When he said it: As a presidential candidate in 2016, saying mental illness, not guns cause mass shootings
▪ How to reach him: 202-456-1111
Sen. Marco Rubio
▪ What he said: “There’s a rationale beyond just the NRA why some of these [gun-control proposals] meet resistance."
▪ Why it matters: Rubio is among the top 20 Senate recipients in funding from gun-rights groups — $3.3 million.
▪ How to reach him: 202-224-3041
Rep. Mario Diaz-Balart
▪ What he said: “Would gun control stop this? No. I want to make sure we look at things that could make a difference.”
▪ Why it matters: Since 1998, Diaz-Balart has been the single largest recipient of direct NRA campaign donations among Floridians in the U.S. House
▪ How to reach him: 202-225-4211
Gov. Rick Scott
▪ What he said: “Let’s remember, the Second Amendment has been around for over 200 years. That’s not what killed innocent people; evil killed innocent people.”
▪ When he said it: After the Pulse massacre
▪ How to reach him: 850-717-9337
Florida Senate President Joe Negron
▪ What he said: “My focus is on making sure that lawful citizens who are obeying the law and entitled to their constitutional rights have appropriate access to firearms.”
▪ When he said it: After the Parkland massacre
▪ How to reach him: 850-487-5229
Rep. Jose Oliva
▪ What he said: “It is the shortest amount of time. The greatest amount of damage. That’s known.”
▪ Why he said it: Oliva thinks vehicles driving into a crowd of people are more likely to be a weapon of mass murder than a gun
▪ How to reach him: 850-717-5110
Speaker Richard Corcoran
▪ What he said: “If law-abiding citizens could carry a gun to a baggage claim, I think you’re going to see gun violence rapidly decline. So why don’t we do that for a change?”
▪ What he’s running for: Corcoran is currently a Florida House and gubernatorial candidate
▪ How to reach him: 850-717-5110 ; @richardcorcoran
Agriculture commissioner Adam Putnam
▪ What he said: “The liberal media recently called me a sellout to the NRA. I’m a proud #NRASellout!”
▪ What he’s running for: Putnam is currently a gubernatorial candidate
▪ How to reach him: @adamputnam
U.S. Rep. Ron DeSantis
▪ What he said: “We’ll have time to debate this stuff.”
▪ What he’s running for: DeSantis is currently a gubernatorial candidate endorsed by President Trump
▪ How to reach him: 202-225-2706