As part of ongoing efforts to get Congress to act on gun control, U.S. Sen Bill Nelson (D-FL) hosted an emotional hearing today with those directly impacted by gun violence, including two members of the Parkland, FL community, who are calling on Congress to pass commonsense gun regulations.
David Hogg, a 17-year-old student from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, FL, and Fred Guttenberg, father of Jaime Guttenberg, who was killed at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School just three weeks ago, both testified at the hearing, and called on Congress to take immediate action.
Nelson introduced the two Floridians, noting their incredible advocacy for gun violence prevention.
“David and his fellow classmates have taken this issue and made it the number one issue that they are talking about nationally. While David was the target of an ugly conspiracy – and that conspiracy came from the far right – he has not let that stop him from continuing to speak out on the need for legislation that prevents gun violence from taking more lives,” Nelson said. “Well, what Fred has done is he’s taken this devastating loss and he’s turned it into a platform for advocacy on gun violence prevention and the need to protect students and alumni from that school who are leading this movement.”
In the wake of the shooting in Parkland, a movement led by students and parents like David Hogg and Fred Guttenberg has swept across the country, and is now bringing their case to Congress.
“I have dedicated the rest of my life to fighting for the cause of gun safety. I will not stop. No other parent should ever go through what my family and 16 other families are going through,” Fred Guttenberg said in his testimony today. “What is unfathomable is how this is not unique to us. This had become something that was becoming way too common. This time, the gun rights crowd messed with the wrong community, the wrong kids, and the wrong dad.”
“Just three weeks ago gun violence took the lives of 17 people in Parkland, Florida and today we heard from a parent and student directly affected. It was incredibly powerful and heartbreaking and I am grateful for all the witnesses who shared their stories today,” Nelson said after the hearing. “What happened in Parkland should never happen again, and I stand with these students, parents and families in demanding action. We must come together now to get something done.”
The hearing today was intended to give members of the U.S. Senate the opportunity to hear directly from survivors and family members who lost loved ones due to gun violence.
Video of Sen. Nelson’s introduction and remarks can be found here.
A full video of the hearing, including witness testimony, can be found here.