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Thursday, May 5, 2016

Obama unveils $500 million gun violence package

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Braced for a fight, President Barack Obama on Wednesday unveiled the most sweeping proposals for curbing gun violence in two decades, pressing a reluctant Congress to pass universal background checks and bans on military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition magazines like the ones used in the Newtown, Conn., school shooting.

A month after that horrific massacre, Obama also used his presidential powers to enact 23 measures that don't require the backing of lawmakers. The president's executive actions include ordering federal agencies to make more data available for background checks, appointing a director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and directing the Centers for Disease Control to research gun violence.

But the president, speaking at White House ceremony, acknowledged the most effective actions must be taken by lawmakers.

"To make a real and lasting difference, Congress must act," Obama said. "And Congress must act soon."

Obama vowed to use "whatever weight this office holds" to press lawmakers into action on his $500 million plan. Still, even supportive lawmakers say the president's proposals most of which are opposed by the powerful National Rifle Association face long odds on Capitol Hill.

The president was flanked by children who wrote him letters about gun violence in the weeks following the Newtown shooting. Families of those killed in the massacre, as well as survivors of the shooting, were also in the audience, along with law enforcement officers and congressional lawmakers.

"This is our first task as a society, keeping our children safe," Obama said. "This is how we will be judged."

The president based his proposals on recommendations from an administration-wide task force led by Vice President Joe Biden. His plan marks the most comprehensive effort to address gun violence in more than two-decades.

The president is asking Congress to renew the ban on high-grade, military-style assault weapons that was first signed into law by President Bill Clinton in 1994 but expired in 2004.

Other measures before Congress include limiting high-capacity ammunition magazines and requiring background checks for all gun buyers in an attempt to close the so-called "gun-show loophole" that allows people to buy guns at trade shows and over the Internet without submitting to background checks.

Obama also intends to seek confirmation for B. Todd Jones, who has served as acting director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives since 2011.

The president's long list of executive orders includes:

Ordering tougher penalties for people who lie on background checks and requiring federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background check system.

Ending limits that make it more difficult for the government to research gun violence, such as gathering data on guns that fall into criminal hands.

Requiring federal law enforcement to trace guns recovered in criminal investigations.

Giving schools flexibility to use federal grant money to improve school safety, such as by hiring school resource officers.

Giving communities grants to institute programs to keep guns away from people who shouldn't have them.

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As stated by the US Constitution

A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free state, the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.

"They that can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety."

Ben Franklin

-- Posted by freedom1776 on Wed, Jan 16, 2013, at 1:12 PM

That's the same lame argument that these gun-whackjobs always throw out! Ask them why they need assault rifles and multi-round clips, and all they can throw out is the 2nd Amendment. THERE IS NO GOOD REASON for a common citizen to need an assault weapon or a 30-round clip. NONE! Those should be limited to law enforcement and military people only -- no exceptions!

Weapons to protect your home and family - fine, no problem. But why is necessary to have a multi-round clip when a normal gun would perform equally as well? No argument presented justifies the need for those two things. An assault rifle for hunting? You must be a really bad shot if it takes that many shots to kill something! And if you're that bad, I'm not sure you should be handling a gun anyway! Same with a multi-round clip. If it takes that long for you to injure an intruder, maybe you shouldn't be handling said gun.

Yeah, yeah, yeah -- guns don't kill people; the people handling the guns kill people. BUT, if those assault weapons were less available, then possible tragedy can be avoided. If a killer attacks people with a shotgun, he can fire up to what -- 6 rounds before reloading? And unless he's an exceptional shooter, it's going to take a bit of time to reload, time enough for someone to possibly disarm the killer, or at least put a big speed-bump in his road to accomplishing his goal.

The militia argument thrown out is equally as lame. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines MILITIA as "a part of the organized armed forces of a country liable to call only in emergency or the body of citizens organized for military service." SEE ABOVE -- limited to law enforcement and military only!

This should generate some scared "Their gonna take away my guns" comments. Bring 'em on. I love to laugh.

-- Posted by DissentingOpinion on Wed, Jan 16, 2013, at 3:55 PM

Following your reasoning, maybe we should ban the sale of fuel with an octane rating of above 92. We don't need 118 octane racing fuel; all we need is regular 87 octane fuel in our cars. High octane racing fuel was in part used to kill 168 people and injured several hundred more in Oklahoma City April 19, 1995.

The intent for the citizens to keep and bear arms was so they could form a militia to protect themselves from or overthrow an oppressive government. Can't hardly go against a government with a squirrel gun now can you? I realize the chances for needing this are next to zero. But it's there if needed.

So where do you draw the line in the sand for having your rights and liberties forcibly removed?

-- Posted by freedom1776 on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 8:33 AM

I doubt that any new gun law would have prevented this nut from inflicting pain and death at that school. He was bent on killing that day and while he used a semi auto rifle, he could have just as easily used a pistol, knife, sword, or bomb. Granted there may have been fewer deaths but his intent was very clear that day. Chicago with the toughest gun laws in the US has the most murders at any given time. In China a man walks into a school and slashes 20 plus kids with a knife. And again in China a man takes an ax and kills 3 kids and injures a bunch more. Their intent was to kill and inflict pain and to stop it we have to address mental illness. Right here in NW Iowa a young guy gets out of prison and within days, kills and takes a hostage. Who would have thought that someone could use an airplane as weapon and yet it happened. Mental illness needs to be the top priority not gun control. Had he gotten help, locked up, or the key thrown away, the GUNS would not have been an issue and these kids would still be alive.

-- Posted by gunner2012 on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 9:59 AM

Well said gunner2012

-- Posted by freedom1776 on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 12:26 PM

I can't agree with you more gunner2012... people kill people and they will use whatever they can get their hands on to get the job done....

"BUT, if those assault weapons were less available, then possible tragedy can be avoided".

once again people kill people and they will use whatever to get the job done!!!

-- Posted by fadersharley on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 12:38 PM

In this case fadersharley and there are others as well that the weapon of choice to inflict casualties was the gun no denying it. The internet has a wealth of good information. The internet is also a place of information that is down right evil for kids, adults, and the mentally ill. If we start overhauling/changing the good intentions of the constitution, then we need to overhaul other freedoms to hopefully protect us from evil as well. How far do we go with what seemed 100's of years ago as good and well thought out intentions to protect us from the evils of today?

-- Posted by gunner2012 on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 1:27 PM

Here is one to think on for those that think the gun is the issue. The deadliest school violence in U.S. history was the Bath School disaster in Michigan in 1927. The killer, Andrew Kehoe, used homemade explosives to kill 38 children and six adults.


-- Posted by gunner2012 on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 2:01 PM

Posted by freedom1776 on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 8:33 AM, "The intent for the citizens to keep and bear arms was so they could form a militia to protect themselves from or overthrow an oppressive government... I realize the chances for needing this are next to zero.But it's there if needed."

That's how you're going to convince me that assault weapons and multi-round clips SHOULDN'T be banned? You're quite the salesman, aren't you.

As I stated before, "Ask them why they need assault rifles and multi-round clips, and all they can throw out is the 2nd Amendment." Freedom1776 just proved my point! Thanks.

-- Posted by DissentingOpinion on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 3:21 PM

Let's just go ahead and make explosives, bombs, and while were at it, nuclear weapons, legal. And easy access for all. After all, it's not explosives, bombs and nuclear weapons that kill people.......

-- Posted by gm on Thu, Jan 17, 2013, at 8:07 PM

My post gm was nothing more than to show that the CT shootings isn't the first time that a crazed person did a horrid act upon children, didn't use a gun, and is getting close to almost 100 years ago. This guy went off the deep end and took revenge against the innocent. "Easy Access for all" we already have it. It's called the internet.

-- Posted by gunner2012 on Fri, Jan 18, 2013, at 8:03 AM


Nice editing of my comment. Do you suppose we would still be part of England if it were unlawful for the settlers to own anything but the most basic of weapons? These reasons are good enough for me, our founding fathers and those that fought to get and maintain our freedom and liberty.

-- Posted by freedom1776 on Fri, Jan 18, 2013, at 8:45 AM

I'm glad to know that defending the constitution is such a lame proposition. "All they can throw out is the second amendment." Really and that's not enough? I would like to have seen you make that arguement to the framer's of the document.

Ok, now for the point of my post. Any number of objects can kill people when used improperly. Car driven by drunk's kill thousands each year. Should we ban cars? Any number of web sites can instruct you what ingredients are needed to make a bomb and the recipe to make that bomb. Since fertilizer and diesel fuel were used in Oklahoma City should we ban fertilizer and diesel fuel?

Should we ban knives, baseball bats, tree limbs? All have been used to kill people. So we shouldn't be allowed to own any of those things?

I like baseball, I played it for recreation. I used a bat, bats have been used to kill people therefore bats should be illegal. Before saying that's a ridiculous arguement, it isn't because that is exactly what you are saying about hand guns or semi automatic rifles. In addition to using them to protect personal property some use them for recreational purposes. Ok, so let me go back to the protection. What happens if you have a group of seven intruders to your home? Now a maybe a mult-round clip in a semi-automatic weapon would be helpful. Sounds ridiculous but so does the notion of what happened at Sandy Hook elementary.

Let me next quickly eliminate the arguement for background checks. They would have done nothing to eliminate the tragedy at Sandy Hook or Columbine. Either the guns were stolen or legally purchased. In the case of Sandy Hook, the young man's mother would have passed all background checks and so it wouldn't have made a difference.

Oh, and, don't forget our government has funded the purchase and distribution of arms to organized crime in Mexico...See the Fast and Furious program of the Dept of Justice. That a way to make sure criminals don't have guns.

Oh, and one other thing. Has D.C. prosecuted David Gregory for taking a multi-round clip on to the set of Meet the Press when he interviewed Wayne LaPierre? D.C. has a law on the books making it illegal to posses those type of clips. Yet, with a national television audience as witness, Gregory and NBC, after being warned not to posses that clip, have not been prosecuted for violating that law.

Look, this is a complex issue that touches on a myriad of problems. The breakdown of the family, mental health, unemployment, poverty. All of those issues play a much larger role in violent crime than the issue of gun control.

Lastly, the American Constitution has served as a guide that has allowed our country to become the greatest nation on the face of the earth with citizens that enjoy more freedom than any other civilization in the planet's history. It must be a pretty good document. Or maybe we should just pick and chose some of the other amendments, say the 19th amendment for one, I'm sure at least one woman has cast a vote that should disqualify all other women from having the right to vote, right?

Now, since the only agruement I can make against gun control is to throw out the second amendment I should stop writing.

-- Posted by tiredofrhetoric on Fri, Jan 18, 2013, at 3:44 PM

Well stated tiredofrhetoric. Thank you.

-- Posted by working_class_dog on Tue, Jan 22, 2013, at 11:59 AM

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