FORT LAUDERDALE-HOLLYWOOD INTERNATIONAL AIRPORT, FLA. (WSVN) -
Democratic U.S. Representatives Debbie Wasserman Schultz and Ted Deutch held a press conference at Fort lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport, Tuesday, advocating for gun laws.
Deutch and Wasserman Schultz are demanding that Congress take action and approve legislation that prohibits people on the Terrorist Watchlist from purchasing guns. The politicians were joined by law enforcement officials, victims of gun violence and activists holding signs that said “DISARM HATE” across rainbow flags.
Deutch and Wasserman Schultz said after the shooting at Pulse nightclub in Orlando, inaction is unconscionable.
House Republicans refused to hold a vote on gun legislation after the Pulse nightclub shooting, so Democrats staged a sit-in as a protest.
“Every year on average, more than 32,000 people die, a number so large that it is hard to even believe or wrap your mind around,” Wasserman Schultz said. “This congress has no right to continue to hold moments of silence for victims and do nothing to prevent the next tragedy. We have a duty to act, and Congressman Deutch and I are both heading back to Washington within the hour to tell Speaker Ryan and House Republicans in the clearest possible terms, do your damn job! Do your damn job! Stand up and face the music!”
Wasserman Schultz pointed to a map of the U.S. littered with red dots, which she said represented all of the mass shooting in the country since the one at an elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut.
“That map represents the mass shooting that have taken place since Newtown in this country,” she said.
“If a suspected terrorist is too dangerous to board a plane, then they shouldn’t be able to buy guns,” Deutch said. “It’s simple: no fly, no buy,”
Broward Sheriff Scott Israel also spoke along with Wasserman Schultz, saying AK-47s do not belong on street in the hands of criminals.
“Insanity is doing something over and over again, and expecting a different result,” Israel said. “Congress, whatever you’re doing, it’s failing, people are coming on to school campuses with guns.”
A victim of gun violence, Megan Hopson, also demanded that action be taken. She showed an image of the car she was in when she was shot at. “That is the car that I almost didn’t make it out of, and the car was riddled with bullets from an AK-47 rifle. Why are there AK-47 rifles available for people to get? I don’t know.”
Roy Gosley of Bill Boyd’s Tackle & Bait Shop said people will get their hands on guns whether they are legal or not. “Bad people mare going to get guns or weapons of whatever they want, anyway,” Gosley said, “so all they’re doing is making it harder and more difficult for business people like me.”
Gosley pointed to the mass shooting in Paris as an example of gun control not working. “It’s illegal as hell to own any firearms at all in France, and yet these guys are getting fully automatic machine guns in the city and shooting up the place, so obviously, gun laws don’t solve the crime problem.”
Local politicians also came out to support gun control. “This country needs to have some sanity. I’m fed up with it, and the mayors are fed up with it. Somebody has to have some common sense,” Pembroke Pines Mayor Frank Ortis said.
Kathryn Reeve of Every Town for Gun Safety expressed a similar sentiment. “It’s simple. It’s sensible,” Reeve said. “We’re trying to save lives. We’re trying to prevent gun violence.”
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