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CNN: Gun violence is an epidemic, says Senator Luján

June 16, 2021

Yesterday, CNN published an op-ed penned by Senator Ben Ray Luján (D-New Mexico) and John Feinblatt, president of Everytown for Gun Safety, calling for Senate action on  background checks. The piece details the increase in gun violence during the pandemic and as the country continues to reopen, calling it an epidemic within the pandemic.

From the piece [emphasis added]: 

“Yes, as America went into lockdown, we saw fewer high-profile mass shootings. But what many people don’t know is this: Almost 4,000 more Americans were killed in gun homicides or non-suicide-related shootings in 2020, as compared to 2019. And while the data is still being analyzed, it will undoubtedly show that Black communities bore the heaviest burden, given that Black Americans are 10 times more likely than White Americans to die by gun homicide.

As Senators debate whether to make gun safety a priority, they should consider the human cost of inaction. In the 25 years since Congress last passed major gun safety legislation, more than 800,000 Americans have been shot and killed.

So, it should come as no surprise that common-sense gun safety legislation has never been more popular. According to an April poll by Quinnipiac University, 89 percent of voters — including 84 percent of Republicans — support requiring background checks on all gun sales.

The takeaway is clear: It’s time for the federal government to do everything possible to protect the American people from gun violence. Because when it comes to this crisis, there is no vaccine on the horizon — what we need right now are brave leaders and common-sense laws.”

Read the full piece here. To learn more about the work that New Mexico volunteers are doing on the state or federal level, please don’t hesitate to reach out. 

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