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Is this all we have to offer? Thoughts and prayers?

by Suzanne Bonamici

My heart grieves for the victims and survivors of the Las Vegas horrific mass shooting and their families. On Monday, the House of Representatives held a moment of silence. And we offered thoughts and prayers.

That’s not enough. It hasn’t been enough for a long, long time.

It wasn’t enough for the Sandy Hook victims and their families. It wasn’t enough for the Umpqua Community College victims and their families. It wasn’t enough for the Pulse nightclub victims and their families. And it’s not enough for all of the other victims of gun violence and their families either.

Is this all we have to offer? Thoughts and prayers?

A call to action to make our children, families, and neighbors safer isn’t politicizing a tragedy – it’s finding a solution to an epidemic that costs thousands of lives every year. We have the power to enact commonsense measures like universal background checks, banning military-style assault weapons, and getting weapons out of the hands of abusers and stalkers.

But we’re not doing that. Instead, Republican leadership was actually planning to have us vote on a bill to loosen restrictions on purchasing gun silencers and another bill that could allow dangerous people from states with loose gun laws to bring their hidden and loaded guns into our communities.

Thoughts and prayers aren’t enough. We owe it to our children, families, and neighbors to do more.

Thank you for standing with me in these difficult times.

Posted on October 4, 2017.