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Hoefert: Preventing tragedy

Register • Apr 17, 2013 at 10:30 AM

Excerpt: “Please help us do something before our tragedy becomes your tragedy.”

That was one of the passionate pleas delivered during the weekly White House address by Francine Wheeler, whose 6-year-old son, Ben, was one of the 20 children killed by a lone gunman Dec. 14 at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn.

In a well thought out plan to get people to listen to the weekly White House address, President Obama decided to have Mrs. Wheeler become the first person outside his administration to give the address during his presidency.

As Wheeler talked, with her husband David sitting at her side, about her son Ben’s love of fun and his excitement at the wonders of life, it made you wonder how many members of Congress were listening when before her heartfelt thank-you, she concluded:

“They haven’t yet passed any bills that will help keep guns out of the hands of dangerous people. And a lot of people are fighting to make sure they never do.”

Wheeler was right. Since the 1994 Federal Assault Weapons Ban expired in 2004 our elected officials in Congress have not changed, altered, revised or mandated any new major gun control legislation.

During that time span, starting with the April 20, 1999, shootings at Columbine High School, there have been 31 school shootings that have resulted in death or multiple deaths in schools across the USA.

That is a full month of deadly school shootings.

After every one of those deadly school shootings our elected officials in Congress harrumphed.

Then they hemmed.

Then they hawed.

Then they forgot.

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