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On 6th Anniversary of VA Tech Shootings, It’s Long Past Time for Action Against Gun Violence

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It’s hard to believe it’s been 6 years since that horrible day at Virginia Tech, when a deranged shooter with access to serious firepower killed 32 people and wounded 17 others. In some ways, what’s even harder to believe is that 6 years after that event – and after other terrible incidents of gun violence – no serious action has been taken to stem this violence at the federal level, or here in Virginia. Clearly, it’s long past time, and overwhelming majorities of Americans want action, yet the NRA and others with major financial interest in preventing such action have, so far, largely prevailed. That’s unacceptable, and it’s long past time we changed it.

With that in mind, see below for a statement by Virginia State Senator Mark Herring, who hopefully will be Virginia’s next Attorney General. Also, the photo is from the great folks at the Coalition to Stop Gun Violence – VA Tech mom Lori Haas speaking, VA Tech shooting victim Colin Goddard standing behind her, Sen. Tim Kaine third from the right, as well as survivors from Aurora, Tuscon and Newtown, all urging #NoMoreNames!I think that’s something we can all agree with.

Today marks the six-year anniversary of the horrific shootings on the campus of Virginia Tech. On the heels of yesterday’s bombings at the Boston Marathon, and four months after the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary, our national consciousness has been awakened, and we are called to take action to address this violence and string of tragedies that are becoming all too commonplace in our society.

As we take time today to reflect on the memory of the 32 lives that were taken so suddenly six years ago in Blacksburg, we need to ask ourselves, “how can we make our communities safer and more secure, for ourselves and for our children?”

There are commonsense steps that we can take right now to address the issues of gun violence in our country: universal background checks, a ban on assault weapons and high capacity magazines, and reforming our mental health care system.

None of these reforms, on their own or taken together, can prevent every tragedy from occurring, but the time to take action is now. We owe it to the victims and their families, and we owe it to ourselves and to future generations.

The fight to enact these reforms will be difficult, but thank you for joining with me as we work to honor the memory of those who were killed at Virginia Tech.

  • Today, we remember the victims of the 2007 Virginia Tech shooting. I was in the Governor’s cabinet at the time, and while I was shocked by the unspeakable horror of that day, I will never forget the heroism displayed by students, faculty, staff, and first responders.

    We honor the victims of that day by committing ourselves to doing all we can to prevent future tragedies from striking our Commonwealth. We must continue the push for universal background checks, an assault weapons ban, expanded mental health screening, and reduced clip size.

    Please join with me in taking time to remember the friends, neighbors, sons, and daughters who we lost at Virginia Tech.

  • Jim B

    Richard Cohen has a pretty good piece in the Post today and he probably is right about the senate gun bill. The bill does nothing to address the last part of his article, too many guns. Very strange we as a nation now won’t confront the real reason for so much gun violence when  some time ago there was some support for getting rid of hand guns.

  • Richmond, VA – Democratic Party of Virginia Chair Delegate Charniele Herring released the following statement on the 6th Anniversary of the tragic shootings at Virginia Tech:

    “April 16th will always be a day to remember and honor those we lost and consider what steps we can take to prevent horrible tragedies like this from happening again.  It is also a day to reflect on the strength of the people of this Commonwealth and our capability to come together and offer support and generosity in the face of an unthinkable tragedy.  

    “As we remember and honor those we lost at Virginia Tech six years ago, we also keep all involved in the tragic events in Boston yesterday in our thoughts and prayers.  In the wake of these horrific events, we can take comfort in the heroism seen by those who were quick to help save lives and the tremendous outpouring of support from people across the country.”

  • Warner reiterates his support for the bipartisan Manchin-Toomey legislation on background checks for gun sales.

  • On yet another issue, this Washington Post/ABC News poll shows that the progressive view – in this case, in favor of totally reasonable, commonsense gun control measures – is the majority view in America. In the case of background checks, it’s overwhelmingly (86%-13%) in favor. Not that Republicans in Congress give a crap, but that’s the reality. No wonder why Republicans need to gerrymander and suppress people’s ability to vote.