Connecticut Lawmakers and advocates against gun violence are growing impatient with congressional inaction over new legislation that’d make it harder for certain people to obtain firearms.
St. Francis Hospital, a level-one trauma center where gunshot wounds are treated, hosted a news conference on Friday in honor of Gun Violence Awareness Day in Connecticut so that advocates could ask federal lawmakers to enact tougher gun laws.
Henrietta Beckman, the president of Mothers United Against Violence, has become an advocate in memory of her son Randy.
He was shot four times in an incident in 2002. He died four days after the shooting.
“People who have guns have to be responsible owners of their guns and most of the people in our city aren’t responsible gun owners because they’re buying illegal guns,” Beckman said. “These guns they’re using to shoot our citizens and our neighborhoods are being traumatized with gun violence on a daily basis.”
She wants federal lawmakers to “use their common sense” to adopt laws that protect citizens.
Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin said that despite the rising tide of voices like Beckman’s, the call for stricter gun laws still hasn’t been heard in Washington.
“We are not moving nearly fast enough and for some reason, there are too many people who are making this a political issue rather than a common sense issue about saving lives,” Bronin said.
Members of Connecticut’s congressional delegation joined Bronin at the news conference to demand action from the U.S. Senate on gun legislation.
Sen. Richard Blumenthal called gun violence the “premiere public health menace” and he characterized Republican members of the senate as being “complicit.”
The U.S. House recently passed a universal background checks bill. But it’s been 100 days since that vote and there hasn’t been a debate on the issue in the senate.
Locally, the city of Hartford is doing another gun buyback on June 15 to combat gun violence. In exchange for their firearms, area residents will get Stop & Shop gift cards.