How many shootings must we endure before Congress acts on gun control?
Just this year, tragedies such as the Navy Yard shooting in Washington D.C. and the recent scare at a New Jersey mall proved that the conversation of gun control in this country should continue.
And if that wasn't enough, in 2012, over four mass shooting rampages occurred. The Newtown tragedy last December re-opened the narrative that is far too common in this country. A tragedy occurs in which innocent victims are targeted, the American public mourns the dead of the innocent and demand gun reform to be implemented, Congress ignores them, and nothing gets done.
I find it deeply implausible to comprehend how members of Congress, especially Republicans, are unwilling to do the job they got elected to do. According to a Washington Post-ABC News poll, 9 in 10 Americans support expanding background checks on gun purchases. That is an extraordinary level of agreement on a political issue.
This is an issue that gathers support among gun owners and non-gun owners alike, Democrat or Republican, and even members of the National Rifle Association.
How is it that with something that carries such a heavy amount of support gets zero traction in Congress? How many more shootings must we endure? How many more innocent victims need to die before Congress does its job and passes a series of commonsense, bipartisan legislation that the American people are demanding?
Bipartisan solutions such as closing background check loopholes to keep guns out of dangerous hands, banning military-assault weapons and high-capacity magazines are just some of the things that Congress could be signing into law.
It's obvious at this point that the gun lobby is doing everything in its ability to kick the can down the road. But as we have seen, time and time again, the issue is not going anywhere.
As each day goes by, and shootings continue to happen, we will continue to have this conversation. But the time for Congress to act is long overdue.
The truth is that no one wants to take away or limit our second amendment rights. The series of proposals previously mentioned are commonsense and are seriously needed. And whoever says otherwise has not done their homework.
Right after the horrific events that occurred in Sandy Hook Elementary, President Obama appointed Vice President Joe Biden to lead an initiative to tackle gun violence from a policy perspective. However, despite the administration's willingness to tackle the issue, including the president's willingness to take action and sign over 20 executive orders to tackle the issue of gun control, nothing got done in Congress.
Part of this is due to politicians in Washington who are unwilling to compromise in order to try and score political points instead of doing what the majority of the American people have been demanding for quite some time.
It's a shame that despite the wide approval from the American people when it comes to the importance of expanding background checks for gun purchases, the gun control bill fell short of passage in the U.S. Senate last April by only 6 votes. In large part, this was due to the pressure that gun lobbying groups placed on congress to stop this bill from becoming law.
So let's not wait for another shooting or another innocent death, before something gets done in Washington.
And if congress does not act, then it is time for voters to replace those members who are being obstructionists and unwilling to pass common sense legislation.