Biden Pushes For Gun Control Reform


Photo Courtesy of: Patrick Semansky

President Joe Biden speaks about the shooting in Boulder, Colorado.

Paulina Camacho, Journalist

On March 16th, a series of mass shootings occurred at 3 spas/massage parlors killing 8 people, 6 of which were of Asian descent. Authorities charged Robert Aaron of 8 counts of murder and aggravated assault. A week later, a gunman entered a supermarket shooting 10 people, including a police officer. Ahmad Al Aliwi Alissa was taken into custody facing 10 counts of first degree murder. The suspect accused of opening fire in a supermarket purchased an assault weapon a week prior to the incident, despite a ban on assault rifles passed in 2018. With the issue of gun violence in 2021, Biden pushes for gun reforms.

“We need action on this in the country,” Cedric Richmond, a senior adviser to Biden and director of the White House Office of Public Engagement stated, pointing to recently passed legislation in the House. “This President has a track record of fighting against the NRA and beating them, and we need to make sure that we have sensible gun regulations in this country to ensure safety. And so we need action, not just words and prayers.”

Biden now urges for gun control after the Colorado shooting and has signaled to press for legislation on top of the other priorities in Congress. The proposed executive actions are requiring background checks on “ghost guns” (guns with no serial numbers) or alerting law enforcement agencies when someone fails a check. There’s also discussion about expanding and strengthening the current background checks as well and banning assault weapons. This includes people who can buy a gun and closing loopholes on background checks such as the “Charleston Loophole” that allows someone to buy a gun if a background check is not concluded after 3 days, and will now be extended to 10. 

Memorial of Atlanta shooting. (Photo Courtesy of: Google Images.)

“It remains a commitment, a personal commitment of the President, to do more on gun safety, to put more measures in place, to use the power of the presidency, to work with Congress. And certainly there’s an important role for the attorney general and the Justice Department to play in this regard,” White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki said last Thursday. “Unfortunately, don’t have any updates for you today, but it is an issue he remains committed to.”

House Republicans are not in favor of tightening gun control because of failed attempts of passing gun legislation in the past. The NRA has also expressed their opposition to banning assault rifles and gun control advocates state that they are “politicizing this horrific situation.”

“Every time there’s a shooting, we play this ridiculous theater where this committee gets together and proposes a bunch of laws that would do nothing to stop these murders,” Senator Ted Cruz said.