Credo Action

Gun control now: Congress must ban assault weapons

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Tell Republicans in Congress:

“It’s time to put your constituents before the NRA. Bring a real gun control legislation package, which includes a ban on assault weapons, to the floor of the House and the Senate.”

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    Gun control now: Congress must ban assault weapons

    After this weekend's horrific shooting at an Orlando LGBT nightclub, Republican politicians were quick to offer their prayers and condolences to the families and friends of the victims.

    Coming from politicians who not only refuse to act to reduce gun violence, but who also foster and promote anti-LGBT bigotry and hate through their words, their party platform and their legislative actions, those “thoughts and prayers” don’t mean much.1

    Yesterday, Democrats in the Senate, led by Connecticut Sen. Chris Murphy, launched a talking filibuster to try to force a vote on gun control. Finally breaking the NRA’s chokehold on Congress will require massive grassroots pressure on our elected officials, demanding they deliver more than thoughts and prayers in the face of our epidemic of gun violence. Can you add your voice today to tell Republican leaders to vote on a meaningful package of gun control reforms, including an assault weapons ban?

    Tell Republicans in Congress: “Thoughts and prayers” are not enough. We need real gun control.

    Republican members of Congress respond to gun tragedies while they’re in the news. But, they don’t take responsibility for how their actions, and inaction, lay the groundwork for hate crimes and gun violence, nor do they take action to prevent these tragedies from happening again. Instead, they offer up either fleeting sentiments or xenophobic and racist policies.

    They need to pass real gun control now, including:

    • Prohibiting the manufacture and sale of assault weapons and "large capacity" magazines for civilian use.

    • Ending the ban on gun violence research.
    • Closing the terror gap by allowing the Department of Justice to block guns sales to anyone on the terror watch list. Between 2004 and 2014, more than 2,000 people on the list purchased guns in the U.S.2

    • Closing the loophole that allows people to buy guns without undergoing background checks through private sales, at gun shows and online. An estimated 40 percent of all firearms transferred in the U.S. are transferred by unlicensed individuals not required to conduct background checks on buyers.3

    • Banning convicted domestic abusers and stalkers from buying guns. Abused women are five times more likely to be killed by their abuser if that individual has access to a firearm.4

    In 2014 alone, the gun lobby spent over $30 million on political advertising and lobbying to influence legislators in Congress and state capitals across the country.5 If Republicans really want to protect Americans, they need to break their blind allegiance to the NRA and pass gun control legislation. But they’ll never act unless we force them. Can you add your voice today?

    Tell Republicans in Congress: It’s time to pass real gun control legislation.

    When Republicans disagree with advances in women’s rights, LGBT rights, or civil rights, they don’t just offer their thoughts and prayers, they push legislation. In just the last year, Republicans in Congress and in state legislatures across the country have worked to make abortion impossible to access, to discriminate against LGBT people, and to take away voting rights. At the same time, they have aggressively pushed the NRA’s agenda to weaken gun laws, from campus carry to permitless carry to stand your ground.

    If all Republicans can offer after this weekend’s massacre are their thoughts and prayers, or misguided scapegoating of Muslim communities that plays into their base’s racism and xenophobia, that speaks volumes. It shows that current Republican leaders in Congress lack the care, or courage, to act.

    Tell Republicans in Congress: “Thoughts and prayers” are not enough. We need real gun control.

    Thank you for your activism.

    References:

    1. David Weigel, “Few Republicans mention LGBT community in Orlando reactions," the Washington Post, June 12, 2016, and Jennifer Bendery and Matt Fuller, “Republicans Kill Spending Bill Over Its LGBT Protections,” HuffingtonPost.com, May 26, 2016.

    2. Closing the Terror Gap in Gun Background Checks,” Everytown for Gun Safety, July 21, 2015.

    3. Universal Background Checks & the “Private” Sale Loophole Policy Summary ,” Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, September 10, 2015.

    4. Gabby Giffords, National Domestic Violence Prevention Leaders Applaud New House Legislation to Keep Guns out of the Hands of Abusers,” Americans for Responsible Solutions, July 22, 2015.

    5. Ben Geier, “NRA's Massive Political Spending Gains Attention,” Fortune, December 3, 2015.