WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW:
- An 18-year-old gunman opened fire at a Texas elementary school, killing 19 children and two adults.
- President Joe Biden called for tighter gun control laws, saying: “When in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby?”
- Biden also asked: “These kinds of mass shootings rarely happen anywhere else in the world. Why?”
President Joe Biden on Tuesday made his appeal to Congress to “stand up to the gun lobby” and pass gun restriction laws after the horrific Texas school shooting. A lone gunman opened fire and killed at least 19 elementary school students and two adults at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas.
The president extended his condolences to the victims’ families and expressed outrage at the existing gun laws. Biden learned of the tragic news during his 17-hour flight back to the U.S. from Japan.
“As a nation, we have to ask, when in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby?” Biden questioned in an address from the White House. He added that he is “sick and tired” of the “carnage.”
“It’s time to turn this pain into action,” Biden continued. “We have to make it clear to every elected official in this country: It’s time to act.”
Biden spoke shortly after arriving in Washington after a trip to Asia.
Officials said the 18-year-old gunman was killed by the police. The motive is still unclear.
Biden has contacted Texas Gov. Greg Abbott while aboard Air Force One after he was informed about the shooting while returning to the U.S. He has also ordered that flags be flown at half-staff at the White House and other federal facilities.
The president has repeatedly called for Congress to pass a law banning assault weapons and expand background checks for gun sales. However, it’s still doubtful that the latest mass shooting will urge Congress to act. Republican lawmakers have been opposing gun restrictions.
During his speech, Biden recalled the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary shooting that occurred during the Obama administration, when he served as vice president. He said there have been more than 900 incidents of gunfire since then.
“I had hoped when I became president I would not have to do this again. Another massacre,” Biden said as he began his remarks. “An elementary school. Beautiful, innocent, second, third, fourth graders. And how many scores of innocent children who witnessed what happened saw their friends die as if they were on a battlefield, for God’s sake?”
Just a week ago, Biden was in Buffalo, N.Y., offering support to families impacted by a mass shooting that killed 10 people at a grocery store in a predominantly Black neighborhood.
Source: The Hill