In response to Saturday’s mass shooting at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh, PA, the Florida Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence released the following statement:
Once again, a hate-driven mass shooting in America has occurred, this time at the Tree of Life Synagogue in Pittsburgh. At this writing, 3 police officers have been shot and multiple casualties reported. Our hearts go out to the Jewish community and all of Pittsburgh as they mourn the loss of these innocent souls. May their memory be for a blessing.
How long do we have to continue to ask the question, “How many more?” before our lawmakers wake up and acknowledge that we have a gun problem in this country? The dead multiply by the day and our lawmakers continually fail to act. Our president’s calls for unity ring hollow. This is no longer an issue of political party loyalty. It is one of human decency. We must all come together to save our democracy from hatred, violence and ruin. Today’s shooting in Pittsburgh is yet one more example of Americans emboldened by our president’s inflammatory rhetoric. As recently as yesterday, President Trump was promoting conspiracy theories and using the anti-Semitic dog whistle term, “globalism.” According to the New York Times, the president “grinned in delight as his audience chanted, ‘Lock ’em up,’ ‘George Soros’ and ‘CNN sucks.’
The easy access to firearms in our country significantly adds to the frequency of these hate-filled mass shootings. As we have seen so many times before, it has been reported that an assault rifle was one of the guns recovered after the shooting – the weapon of choice of mass shooters and one that puts law enforcement in particular danger because of its firepower. The President, along with federal and state lawmakers need to confront our gun issue head on, rather than calling for more weapons or the death penalty as a response.