Area legislators weigh in on gun violence, control

By Michael Rellahan, Daily Local News, 12/12/15

In 2015, the United States of America has experienced more than 350 mass shootings, more than one for every day of the year.

That’s dozens of people killed and hundreds of people wounded in places that are well known and others that are small enough to have previously escaped notice.

Opening up one’s newspaper and reading an account of people running from a building where a mass shooting has taken place is horrifying, but also is slowly becoming the “new normal.” Remember the February shooting in Douglassville, Ga., in which five people were killed, including several children? If you don’t, it could be because such news stories now seem to fit into the fabric of our lives.

In Chester, Delaware, Montgomery, Berks and Bucks counties in the Delaware Valley, the stark fact is that it will only be a matter of time before we recognize the building into which emergency responders are rushing to help save the lives of multiple shooting victims as being right down the street from where we live.

The editorial staff of Digital First Media, including the Daily Local News, recently asked the elected officials who represent our readers in Washington, D.C. to answer some simple but straight forward questions about gun violence and how to combat it. Following are the questions that we asked, and the responses that we received from those legislators.

Questions:

What are your feelings about gun violence in America? How much of a concern is it of yours, both as a citizen and a legislator?

Are there steps that Congress and the president can take to reduce the incidence of gun violence? What are they?

Do you think that the laws governing gun purchases and ownership in the United States are a) sufficient to prevent gun violence, b) insufficient to prevent gun violence or c) in need of minor adjustments?

Do you think your constituents would favor increased gun control laws, or oppose them? Do you think you constituents want the government to act on gun control? How divided do you see the issue among your constituents?

Does the influence among legislators of the National Rifle Association alarm you, or not?…

See Daily Local News for responses of Senators Casey and Toomey and US Representatives Costello, Meehan, and Pitts.

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