News / USA

Obama Calls for Action on Gun Violence

Obama Calls for Action to Curb Gun Violencei
X
January 14, 2013 12:10 PM
Tuesday, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is expected to unveil recommendations for curbing gun violence in America, which claims thousands of lives each year. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports, the recommendations come one month after a deadly shooting rampage at a Connecticut elementary school that re-ignited a long-simmering debate on gun control.
Michael Bowman
Tuesday, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden is expected to unveil recommendations for curbing gun violence in America, which claims thousands of lives each year. The recommendations come one month after a deadly shooting rampage at a Connecticut elementary school that re-ignited a long-simmering debate on gun control.

Gunfire erupted on December 14 at Sandy Hook Elementary School, where a heavily armed young man shot and killed 20 children and several school administrators. The entire nation recoiled in grief and horror.

Days later, President Barack Obama issued a call to action.

“We cannot tolerate this anymore.  These tragedies must end," he stated. "And to end them, we must change.”

As victims were laid to rest and the country continued to mourn, Obama appointed Vice President Joe Biden to head a task force on preventing gun violence.

“If our actions result in only saving one life, they are worth taking,” said Biden.

Biden has met with a broad spectrum of interested parties in the gun-control debate, including gun rights advocates. Far from restricting access to firearms, the National Rifle Association urges a greater armed presence in America’s schools.

“The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,” said NRA chief Wayne LaPierre.

Others say steps can be taken to keep the most lethal weapons out of the hands of evildoers without strangling Americans’ constitutional right to bear arms.

“NRA members know there are solutions to this problem that exist without taking away the right of any law-abiding citizen to own a gun,” said gun-control advocate Dan Gross.

Possible recommendations from Vice President Biden include banning assault weapons as well as high-capacity ammunition clips, strengthening regulation of gun sales, and improving U.S. mental health services.

Firearms merchants report a spike in purchases by gun owners who fear stricter laws will soon be enacted.

Solutions to gun violence crafted in Washington will be only marginally successful, according to analyst Trevor Burrus.

“I am most afraid of doing cosmetic legislation. There is a very big temptation in these situations to do something like an assault weapons ban," he explained. "And say, ‘We did something. Let us pat ourselves on the back and go home,’ even though this is not going to solve the problem.'”

But the post-Sandy Hook mobilization extends well beyond the nation’s capital. Some states, like New York, are considering tougher gun-control laws of their own.

“It is simple. No one hunts with an assault rifle. No one needs 10 bullets to kill a deer. And too many innocent people have died already," said New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.. "End the madness now!”

The Sandy Hook shootings stunned a nation long accustomed to gun violence. Vice President Biden’s recommendations come at a time of continued universal outrage over the incident. But congressional consideration of his proposals will likely occur later in the year, when the immediacy of Sandy Hook may have faded.

You May Like

Ukraine: Mysterious 'Roaming Tank' Reportedly Takes Aim at Smugglers

Ukraine's TV, print media, Facebook abuzz with reports a 'roaming tank' is on the loose, destroying vehicles of those involved in smuggling More

US Wildlife Service Begins Probe of Killing of Cecil the Lion

Minnesota man accused of killing beast is in hiding, has been asked to contact US officials; White House to review extradition petition More

Video Kerry Five-Nation Tour to Cover Security, Iran Nuclear Deal

Secretary of state will visit Egypt, Qatar, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam to discuss security issues, Iran nuclear deal, Trans-Pacific Partnership More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments page of 2
 Previous    
by: Anonymous
January 14, 2013 9:12 AM
If the and President an Vice President truly cared about our Childern, they should stop abortion which takes more lives daily that any gun. “If our actions result in only saving one life, they are worth taking,” said Biden. He should take those words to heart across ALL areas of the Government.
In Response

by: Anonymous
January 14, 2013 9:56 AM
I believe the core difference between pro-life and pro-choice individuals is that we don't agree that life begins at conception.

by: Rex from: Pittsburgh
January 14, 2013 9:08 AM
Keep Guns and Crazy people securely locked in separate places at all times.
Comments page of 2
 Previous    

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’i
X
July 29, 2015 9:34 PM
Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Booming London Property a ‘Haven for Dirty Money’

Billions of dollars of so-called ‘dirty money’ from the proceeds of crime - especially from Russia - are being laundered through the London property market, according to anti-corruption activists. As Henry Ridgwell reports from the British capital, the government has pledged to crack down on the practice.
Video

Video Hometown of Boy Scouts of America Founder Reacts to Gay Leader Decision

Ottawa, Illinois, is the hometown of W.D. Boyce, who founded the Boy Scouts of America in 1910. In Ottawa, where Scouting remains an important part of the legacy of the community, the end of the organization's ban on openly gay adult leaders was seen as inevitable. VOA's Kane Farabaugh reports.
Video

Video 'Metal Muscles' Flex a New Bionic Hand

Artificial limbs, including the most complex of them – the human hand – are getting more life-like and useful due to constant advances in tiny hydraulic, pneumatic and electric motors called actuators. But now, as VOA’s George Putic reports, scientists in Germany say the future of the prosthetic hand may lie not in motors but in wires that can ‘remember’ their shape.
Video

Video Russia Accused of Abusing Interpol to Pursue Opponents

A British pro-democracy group has accused Russia of abusing the global law enforcement agency Interpol by requesting the arrest and extradition of political opponents. A new report by the group notes such requests can mean the accused are unable to travel and are often unable to open bank accounts. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video 'Positive Atmosphere' Points Toward TPP Trade Deal in Hawaii

Talks on a major new trade agreement among 12 Pacific Rim nations are said to be nearing completion in Hawaii. Some trade experts say the "positive atmosphere" at the discussions could mean a deal is within reach, but there is still hard bargaining to be done over many issues and products, including U.S. drugs and Japanese rice. VOA's Jim Randle reports.
Video

Video Genome Initiative Urgently Moves to Freeze DNA Before Species Go Extinct

Earth is in the midst of its sixth mass extinction. The last such event was caused by an asteroid 66 million years ago. It killed off the dinosaurs and practically everything else. So scientists are in a race against time to classify the estimated 11 million species alive today. So far only 2 million are described by science, and researchers are worried many will disappear before they even have a name. VOA’s Rosanne Skirble reports.
Video

Video Scientists: One-Dose Malaria Cure is Possible

Scientists have long been trying to develop an effective protection and cure for malaria - one of the deadliest diseases that affects people in tropical areas, especially children. As the World Health Organization announces plans to begin clinical trials of a promising new vaccine, scientists in South Africa report that they too are at an important threshold. George Putic reports, they are testing a compound that could be a single-dose cure for malaria.
Video

Video 'New York' Magazine Features 35 Cosby Accusers

The latest issue of 'New York' magazine features 35 women who say they were drugged and raped by film and television celebrity Bill Cosby. The women are aged from 44 to 80 and come from different walks of life and races. The magazine interviewed each of them separately, but Zlatica Hoke reports their stories are similar.
Video

Video US Calls Fight Against Human Trafficking a Must Win

The United States is promising not to give up its fight against what Secretary of State John Kerry calls the “scourge” of modern slavery. Officials released the country’s annual human trafficking report Monday – a report that’s being met with some criticism. VOA’s National Security correspondent Jeff Seldin has more from the State Department.
Video

Video Washington DC Underground Streetcar Station to Become Arts Venue

Abandoned more than 50 years ago, the underground streetcar station in Washington D.C.’s historic DuPont Circle district is about to be reborn. The plan calls for turning the spacious underground platforms - once meant to be a transportation hub, - into a unique space for art exhibitions, presentations, concerts and even a film set. Roman Mamonov has more from beneath the streets of the U.S. capital. Joy Wagner narrates his report.
Video

Video Europe’s Twin Crises Collide in Greece as Migrant Numbers Soar

Greece has replaced Italy as the main gateway for migrants into Europe, with more than 100,000 arrivals in the first six months of 2015. Many want to move further into Europe and escape Greece’s economic crisis, but they face widespread dangers on the journey overland through the Balkans. VOA's Henry Ridgwell reports.
Video

Video Stink Intensifies as Lebanon’s Trash Crisis Continues

After the closure of a major rubbish dump a week ago, the streets of Beirut are filling up with trash. Having failed to draw up a plan B, politicians are struggling to deal with the problem. John Owens has more for VOA from Beirut.
Video

Video Paris Rolls Out Blueprint to Fight Climate Change

A U.N. climate conference in December aims to produce an ambitious agreement to fight heat-trapping greenhouse gases. But many local governments are not waiting, and have drafted their own climate action plans. That’s the case with Paris — which is getting special attention, since it’s hosting the climate summit. Lisa Bryant takes a look for VOA at the transformation of the French capital into an eco-city.
Video

Video Racially Diverse Spider-Man Takes Center Stage

Whether it’s in a comic book or on the big screen, fans have always known the man behind the Spider-Man mask as Peter Parker. But that is changing, at least in the comic book world. Marvel Comics announced that a character called Miles Morales will replace Peter Parker as Spider-Man in a new comic book series. He is half Latino, half African American, and he is quite popular among comic book fans. Correspondent Elizabeth Lee reports from Los Angeles.
Video

Video Historic Symbol Is Theme of Vibrant New Show

A new exhibit in Washington is paying tribute to the American flag with a wide and eclectic selection of artwork that uses the historic symbol as its central theme. VOA’s Julie Taboh was at the DC Chamber of Commerce for the show’s opening.

VOA Blogs