Burlington, VT – Today, Mayor Miro Weinberger released the following statement:
“With this weekend’s two massacres in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio, there have now been 2,180 mass shootings since the December 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School.* These rampages are intolerable, and they demand the kind of strong, national protections that virtually every other country has successfully put in place. After 20 years of inaction and backsliding, it is long past time for the federal government to do something to protect Americans from these horrific massacres.
To that end, earlier today, I added my name to a letter signed by 213 other mayors around the country calling on the U.S. Senate to come back to Washington and immediately pass two bipartisan gun safety bills that have already been approved by the House. These bills would greatly strengthen the background check system, save lives, and constitute a long-overdue first step towards reducing gun violence.
We will need more steps. Reversing decades of devastating federal gun violence policy will require the kind of sustained, multi-faceted, well-resourced public health approach that has defined our response to highway fatalities, the HIV epidemic, and other avoidable deaths.
I grieve with the loved ones and the communities impacted by this weekend’s violence in El Paso and Dayton. The best way to honor these victims, and those that fell before in Orlando, Pittsburgh, Las Vegas, Barre, and so many other U.S. cities, is for the federal government to act and start to fix this uniquely American crisis.”
* “Mass shooting” is used here according to the Gun Violence Archive’s definition, and refers to an incident of gun violence in which four or more people were injured or killed.