Good evening my fellow Americans. I had hoped when I became president I would not have to do this. Again
Another massacre, Uvalde, Texas. An elementary school. Beautiful, innocent, second, third, fourth-graders. And how many scores of little children, see their friends die, as if they’re on a battlefield for God’s sake. Gotta live with it the rest of their lives.
There’s a lot we don’t know yet. But there’s a lot we do know.
The parents who will never see their child again. Never have them jump in bed and cuddle with them Parents who will never be the same.
To lose a child is like having a piece of your soul ripped away. There’s a hollowness in your chest you feel like you’re being sucked into it. And never going to be able to get out. Suffocating. And it’s never quite the same. It’s the feeling shared by the siblings and the grandparents and the family members and the community that’s left behind.
Scripture says – and Jill and I have talked about this in different contexts, in other contexts – the Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.
President Joe Biden delivered remarks from the White House Tuesday night about the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas after returning from a five-day trip to South Korea and Japan
So many crushed spirits.
So tonight, I ask the nation to pray for them.
And give the parents, siblings the strength in the darkness they feel right now.
As a nation we have to ask, when in God’s name are we doing to stand up to the gun lobby?
When in God’s name will we all do what we know in our gut needs to be done?
It’s been … 3,448 days, 10 years, since I stood up at a high school in Connecticut – a grade school in Connecticut, where another gun man massacred 26 people, including 20 first-graders at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
Since then, there have been over 900 incidents, gun fires reported on school grounds – Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, Santa Fe high school in Texas, Oxford high school in Michigan, and the list goes on and on and the list grows – when we include mass shootings at places like movie theaters, houses of worship – as we saw just 10 days ago at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York.
I am sick and tired of it.
We have to act. And don’t tell me we can’t have an impact on this carnage.
I spent my career as a senator and a vice president working to pass common-sense gun laws.
We can’t and won’t prevent every tragedy, but we know they work and have positive impact.
When we passed the assault weapons ban, mass shootings went down, when the law expired, mass shootings tripled.
The idea that an 18-year old kid can walk into a gun store and buy two assault weapons is just wrong.
What in God’s name do you need an assault weapon for except to kill someone?
Deer aren’t running through the forest with Kevlar vests on for God’s sake. It’s just sick.
And the gun manufacturers have spent two decades aggressively marketing assault weapons, which make them the most and largest profit. For God’s sake, we have to have the courage to stand up to the industry.
Here’s what else I know.
Most Americans support common sense laws, common sense gun laws.
I just got off a trip from Asia meeting with Asian leaders. And I learned of this while I was on the aircraft. What struck me on that 17-hour flight, what struck me was these kinds of mass shootings rarely happen anywhere else in the world.
Why? They have mental health problems. They have domestic disputes in other countries. They have people who are lost. But these kinds of mass shootings never happen with the kind of frequency that they happen in America. Why? Why are we willing to live with this carnage? Why we we keep letting this happen?
Where in God’s name is our backbone?
To have the courage to deal with, to stand up to the lobbies.
It’s the time to turn this pain into action. For every parent, for every citizen of this county, we have to make it clear to every elected official in this country, it’s time to act.
For those who obstruct or delay or block the common sense gun laws, we need to let you know that we will not forget. We can do so much more, we have to do more.
Our prayer tonight is those parents lying in bed trying to figure out, will I be able to sleep again? What do I say to my other children? What happens tomorrow?
May God bless the loss of innocent life on this sad day.
And may the lord be near the brokenhearted and save those crushed in spirit becaue they’re going to need a lot of help, a lot of our prayers. God love you.