An epidemic of gun violence is raging in this nation. The murder rate per 100,000 in this country is 10 times greater than in comparable industrialized democracies. We are 4.6% of the world’s population but we are home to 43% of all guns not currently held by the military or police. In the U.S., military-style weapons are in the hands of civilians. In the absence of the federal government acting, the states are going to have to react … or the voters will.
Young people are the victims in what has become today’s “shooting galleries” – our nation’s schools. Even after the mass shooting at VA Tech in 2007, we still are far from a solution to this scourge. Dick Saslaw has worked closely with the Coalition Against Gun Violence, Everytown for Gun Safety, and Moms Demand Action to do more than just offer his thoughts and prayers to the thousands of people whose lives have been shattered with weapons in the wrong hands. Arming teachers is not only unacceptable, it is foolish to think a hand gun is going to stop a large-caliber, high-capacity weapon.
Taking on the NRA and Civil Defense League, Senator Saslaw has used his influence with colleagues and the Governor to pull in the reigns on unreasonable legislation. With his leadership, all the Governor’s vetoes on this issue for the past five years were sustained. Domestic violence abusers must now surrender their weapons within two days after being ordered to do so by the courts.
Dick Saslaw is ready to stop the violence. Universal background checks are a long overdue step in the right direction. Banning the sale of mechanical devices that accelerate the firing mechanism on weapons (such as bump stocks) and prohibiting civilian use of assault-style weapons will do even more to help end this epidemic.