US President Joe Biden has called for a series of major changes to gun laws in America.
More than 18,000 people have died from gun violence this year alone in the US and Biden’s comments are on the heels of last month’s Texas shooting, when 19 children and two adults were killed at an elementary school in Uvalde.
On 24 May, 18-year-old Salvador Ramos opened fire at Robb Elementary School in the city of Uvalde using an AR-style semi-automatic rifle.
Ten days earlier, a lone gunman entered a grocery store in Buffalo with a similar weapon and killed ten people.
Now, the president has called for three major changes to US gun laws.
Speaking from the White House on Thursday (2 June), Biden said: “For God's sake, how much more carnage are we willing to accept?"
Biden has urged Congress to ban assault weapons, raise the legal age to buy guns, and expand background checks.
He also wants to repeal gun manufacturers’ liability shield, which protects them from being sued over violence carried out by people carrying their weapons, according to Sky News.
Noting that ‘too many everyday places have become killing fields’, Biden said: "This time we have to take the time to do something.
“I know how hard it is, but I'll never give up and if Congress fails, I believe this time a majority of the American people won't give up either."
He added: "I believe the majority of you will act to turn your outrage into making this issue central to your vote."
Sky News noted that shortly after Biden’s address, a gunman killed two women and himself in the parking lot of an Iowa church.
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi confirmed on Wednesday (1 June) that a ban on assault weapons was about to be considered.
If passed, the ban would mark the most aggressive response so far to last month’s shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
House Democratic leaders have also scheduled a vote next week on legislation that will keep weapons out of the hands of ‘potentially violent people’.
However, it’s not a given that a ban on assault weapons would get the full House’s vote, as not only do some centrist Democrats oppose such a ban, but barely any Republicans are likely to give such legislation their backing.
Speaking after Pelosi’s announcement, a senior Democratic aide said: “We are looking at many legislative options to make our country safer and assessing where we have the votes.”
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