New York City mayor and Medford native Michael Bloomberg, co-chair of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, is speaking out following the horrific shooting that took place in Aurora, Colorado this past weekend. He said gun violence is a national problem that needs to be addressed by whoever is President:
“Your heart shatters when you think of the family members who were given the worst news imaginable, and we pray for the recovery of the dozens who were injured. Now there will be many expressions of support and condolences from politicians in the coming days, but maybe it’s time that the two people who want to be President of the United States stand up and tell us what they are going to do about it, because this is obviously a problem across the country. There are so many murders with guns every day – it’s just got to stop. And instead of the two people – President Obama and Governor Romney – talking in broad terms about what they want to do to make the world a better place, okay, tell us how. And this is a real problem. No matter where you stand on the Second Amendment, no matter where you stand on guns, we have a right to hear from both of them concretely, not just in generalities – specifically what are they going to do about guns? I can tell you what we do here in New York. The State Legislature passed the toughest gun laws – some other states may say no. That’s okay, what do you want to do? And maybe every Governor should stand up. But in the end, it is really the leadership at a national level, which is whoever is going to be President of the United States – what are they going to do about guns?”
Boston Mayor Tom Menino, co-chair of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, also issued a statement:
“My condolences and prayers go out to the victims and families of victims who were affected by this random and senseless act. While we still don’t know much about how this happened, we do know that we have laws in this country that allow people who have no business ever possessing a firearm to get their hands on guns. We have a Columbine, a Virginia Tech, a Tucson, an Aurora theater every day in America. 34 people are killed with guns every single day in America. And yet – we will see a few weeks of media attention that forces politicians to express their condolences, but then no action is taken in Washington to fix the problem. The fixes are easy and they are common sense. It’s about enforcing existing Federal laws and making sure we don’t let criminals buy weapons. We need to put a background check on all sales and require states to step up their reporting to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS) to make sure we have a check that works. Maybe this will finally wake up Washington. We are going to keep the pressure on because this just has to stop.”
Mayors Against Illegal Guns is a bipartisan coalition of more than 600 mayors from across the country that seeks to address the problem of illegal guns and gun violence in the US. The organization was founded by Mayor Bloomberg and receives much of its funding from his own personal fortune, according to a Reuters story about MAIG. Bloomberg and Menino are co-chairs of MAIG, which was launched in April 2006.