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Gun Control Takes Center Stage at Violence Prevention Program


There is a national conversation now over gun control in the wake of last week’s deadly school shooting in Newtown.

Emotions ran high Sunday evening as dozens gathered at St. John’s Episcopal Church to discuss violence prevention and gun control.

People there were still reeling from the deadly shooting at the elementary school that killed 20 children.

“I’m horrified at what has happened in Newtown,” said Rev.
Joseph Pace.

“The root cause of why [Adam Lanza] did this, had nothing to do with assault rifles. He would have found another way to do this,” said one man.

Rep. John B. Larson (D-CT) hosted the forum. The democratic congressman is co-sponsoring a bill that would ban assault weapons and high-capacity clips.

“We will persist in making sure that we stay after this legislation in a comprehensive manner,” said Rep. Larson.

Some think mitigating violence lies with stricter gun control laws and more mental health services.

“Guns kill people. Access to guns will allow somebody to kill people,” said Alberto Cohen-Abbo.

“I certainly support a ban on assault weapons and also much more attention, funds and support given to those who are mentally ill,” said Rev. Joseph Pace.

However, others said taking guns away from law-abiding citizens is not the answer.

“If you want to prevent crime, get the criminals off the street and keep them off the street,” said Ed Peruta.

But, Congressman Larson said lawmakers must act to make sure massive shootings, like what happened in Newtown on December 14th, don’t happen again.

“If we don’t stand up now…whether you’re a member of congress or you’re a member of any community…aren’t we then complicit for not having done [anything]?”

Congressman Larson is optimistic that gun control legislation will pass, but the question is whether it’ll have the votes it needs in congress to be approved.

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