Enough is Enough
Washington, DC — Congressman Earl Blumenauer released the following statement on the tragic shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando on Sunday, June 12:
On Sunday, a mad man's fury and hate was directed at the LGBT community, resulting in the murder of 49 people and injuring many more. Our country is reeling from the horrifying violence in Orlando - the worst mass shooting in recent American history by someone who, in his own words, identified with ISIS.
This was a homophobic attack that has shattered lives, yet another tragedy from gun violence.
It's outrageous that Congress has failed to act to prevent more tragedies.
Why haven't we learned? When will this stop? At what point do we say enough is enough and act?
Many people have asked what I'm doing. My approach is outlined in my plan for a path forward for gun safety in America. I published this plan over a year ago, and highlighted it again last October after the shooting at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. Since then there have been 258 mass shootings.
At every turn, I work to treat gun violence like the public health epidemic it is. We can take commonsense steps to protect Americans, including:
- Keeping guns from the most dangerous users by closing the "private sale loophole" and implementing comprehensive and uniform background checks;
- Having law enforcement follow up with each person who fails the background check;
- Restricting assault weapons and high capacity magazines that are unsafe in any public space;
- Improving our mental health system to make it more accessible and available and enhancing our capacity to help individuals with mental illness;
- Authorizing and increasing research on gun violence to allow us to fully understand the impact and implications of current policies;
- Making sure guns are tested and regulated to ensure consistency and product safety for consumers;
- Empowering health care professionals to discuss all matters that affect their patients' health, including gun ownership;
- Ensuring better regulation for gun dealers and focusing compliance on the few unscrupulous gun dealers;
- Enforcing existing gun laws by not letting the gun lobby undermine enforcement agencies;
- Requiring that people purchasing a gun have liability insurance; and
- Providing resources for first responders, schools, and public facilities personnel to deal with active-shooter situations.
I'm working on several bills in Congress that make these changes. I'm proud to stand with my colleagues in the Senate to filibustered for these efforts.
No more just thoughts and prayers. Not just moments of silence.
If we want to support the LGBT community and every family in America and keep our communities safe, we need to bring these bills to the floor for a vote now - and, while we're at it, bills that promote the equality agenda.
Member of Congress