Exasperate Democrats and other gun-reforms supporters fumed “enough is enough” after a grim week of mass shootings in the United States, and called for “reasonable” and “commonsense” safety laws, but, as before, they were greeted with silence from the other side, or the usual pushback.
“Enough is enough,” House of Representative Speaker Nancy Pelosi said in a statement after the El Paso shooting, and slammed Senate Republication for “continued inaction”, without saying so, on a legislation expanding federal background checks for most gun sales, which the House passed in February.
“We’re fed up,” Amber Gustafson, leader of a group called Moms Demand Action, said to The Washington Post. “It’s past time for change.” The group led a march to the White House demanding that Bill passed by the House be taken up by the Senate, which is controlled by Republicans.
But there was no indication Republicans were any more open to it on Sunday after 32 deaths in three separate mass shootings in just a week, than they were in February.
President Donald Trump condemned the killings as “an act of cowardice”; Vice-President Mike Pence said he was “saddened”; and Senate majority leader Mitch McConnell, who has refused to table that bill, said it was “sickening” to wake up to another mass shooting. Nothing about gun-law reforms.
Republicans’ ties to the gun lobby, specifically the NRA, have foiled every effort to legislate even the smallest of changes. Trump was ready, for instance, for expanded background checks after the Parkland high school shooting in 2018, but changed his mind after a meeting with the NRA.
Gun-rights advocates blame massacres such as the one in El Paso on mental health issues. Texas governor Greg Abbott, a Republican, told reporters Saturday that the “most profound” learning from a 2018 school shooting in the state was the “need for the state and for society to do a better job of dealing with challenging mental health-based issues”.