Another massacre in our country; more thoughts and prayers. And again perpetrated with a weapon of war of unlimited ammunition capacity. Unfortunately, thoughts and prayers alone are woefully deficient without action. 

It is time to ban assault rifles; period. But this is not a novel idea as it was banned under President Clinton. So instead of saying that we need to “ban assault weapons” as if it is a new and scary idea, let’s refer to it for what it really is; a “renewal “on the ban on assault weapons from 1994. President Clinton managed to get them banned then but unfortunately for only 10 years. Remember, no other country on earth has an organization like the N.R.A who has a stranglehold on lawmakers; an organization that promotes and promulgates a sick glory to guns whose sole purpose is to be used as killing machines.

What we need is what Cory Booker is advocating; banning assault weapons, universal background checks, limits on ammunition magazines, closing the gun show and requiring a license to own a gun. You need a license to drive a car and why? Because if you recklessly drive a car it can become a deadly weapon, yet we don’t require it nationally to buy a gun whose only purpose is to kill and maim?

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Nothing is being done, but make no mistake that this inaction rests completely on the Republicans. The Democrats in the House recently passed gun legislation and what does Mitch McConnell do? Nothing. Shockingly, it seems that he cares much more about the N.R.A. than human lives. Think about that for a minute, because it is the unadulterated truth.

Meanwhile, Republicans cower to Trump and remain silent amidst Trump's vitriolic rants against immigrants and minorities. Shame on the former party of Lincoln for it is now led by Donald J. Trump whose anti immigration platform has spawned an atmosphere ripe for White Nationalism and Anti-Semititsm to grow. The shooter at the Tree of Life Synogogue said he had to kill Jews because the synagogue supported an organization that aided refugees and he  said online that he had to kill Jews to stop the 'invasion". The shooter in El Paso repeated the words "invasion" as well which is exactly what Donald Trump says at every turn, calling refugees and immigrants an "invasion". This is not an accident nor did it occur in a vacuum. Republicans watch as we fall prey to domestic terrorists and they do nothing. They stand idly by as White Nationalism and Anti-Semitism grow larger day by day while at the same time these haters are feeling empowered and inspired by our very own president, their leader.

Republicans and Trump are complicit in this American horror so the only solution for meaningful change in this country is for Americans to vote out every Republican Senator so we can finally do something about gun control and reduce mass shootings. Something has to be done and if Republicans lack the moral courage to do that , then they do not deserve to represent the American people.  

Karen Egert,

Springfield Resident