Biden Pushes for Assault Weapons Ban: ‘These Are Weapons of War’

( – President Biden called on Congress Tuesday to pass an assault weapons ban, calling them “weapons of war.”

Speaking in Durham, N.C., at an event called “Investing in America,” the president began by talking about the school shooting in Nashville, Tenn., where a woman who identifies as “he/him” killed six people before being shot to death by police.

Biden said that he’s “a 2nd Amendment guy” who owns shotguns, but the 2nd Amendment is not absolute. You’re not allowed to own a machine gun or a flamethrower, he said.

Before I begin to talk about the whole notion of rebuilding America, I want to talk very briefly about what happened in Nashville. You know, we know the names of the victims.  We’ve seen the initial footage of the attack. Three children — three children dead, all just nine years old, including the daughter of the pastor. Three members of the staff — the school custodian, a substitute teacher, and the head of school.

I spoke with one of the — like, actually, it was the governor’s wife — the governor — he was telling me his wife was about to have dinner that night with her. There is still more to learn about what happened, but there’s plenty we do know. We know that this family’s worst nightmare — a family’s worst nightmare has occurred.  

I’ve lost a child not to that; I’ve lost a child on accident and to a cancer, but I’ll tell you, there’s nothing like losing a child. Particularly the more senseless it is, the more devastating the impact on you.  It’s absolutely heartbreaking, and it’s senseless. You know, those children should all be with us still. By the way, have a seat, if you have one. 

They should still be with us. As a nation — this is not hyperbole — as a nation, we owe these families more than our prayers. We owe them action. You know, we have to do more to stop this gun violence that are ripping communities apart and ripping apart the soul of this nation; to protect our children so they learn how to read and write instead of duck and cover in the classroom. You know, we need to act. These are weapons of war. 

I’m a Second Amendment guy. I have two shotguns. My sons have shotguns. You know, but our states — you know, everybody thinks somehow the Second Amendment is absolute. You’re not allowed to go out and own a — an automatic weapon.  You’re not allowed to own a machine gun. You’re not allowed to own a flamethrower. You’re not allowed to own so many other things.

Why in God’s name do we allow these weapons of war in our streets and at our schools? According to law enforcement, the shooter in this horror had two assault weapons and a pistol. What in God’s name are we doing? These guns are the number — gun- — this is hard to believe — I never thought when I started my public life — that guns would be the number one killer of children in America. Guns: number one. 

It’s sick, and, overwhelmingly, a majority of gun owners agree: We have to do something. Not just everybody; the gun owners agree. There’s a moral price to pay for inaction. Last year, we came together to pass the most significant gun safety legislation in 30 years. It was bipartisan. We got it done, and don’t tell me we can’t do more together.

So I again call on Congress to pass the assault weapons ban. Pass it. It should not be a partisan issue. This is a commonsense issue. We have to act now, and people say why do I keep saying this if it’s not happening? Because I want you know who isn’t doing it, who isn’t helping — to put pressure on them.

You know, I know you see on television — it’s not just merely the weapon in terms of its — that it’s semiautomatic, in effect, but the velocity with which is comes out of that muzzle, what it does when it hits the body.  

Most bullets would go just straight through and out, leaving — but it blows up once it’s inside your body. What in God’s name — what in God’s name does anyone need that for in America?


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