On Tuesday, as law enforcement agencies around the country prepared to mark National Nite Out Against Crime, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney and Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams joined Public Advocate Letitia James, Trudy Mason, Vice-Chair of the New York State Democratic Committee, and local gun violence prevention supporters to advocate for local and federal action to curb gun violence. The call follows a violent weekend in Brooklyn that left three people dead and 16 wounded. New York Police Department statistics show that there have been 669 shooting incidents that have killed or wounded 794 people since the beginning of this year.
In addition, around 170 people have died in over 40 separate incidents nationwide this year, in shooting incidents involving three or more victims, according to a list compiled by the Congresswoman.
“The bloodbath has got to stop,” said Maloney, the lead sponsor of five gun violence prevention bills in Congress. “We cannot continue to allow the loopholes that allow dangerous people to get a gun, regardless of their history of violence. We cannot keep imposing minor penalties for gun trafficking. We must stop shortchanging the background check system. Most of all, we need common-sense regulations that will protect Americans from gun violence.”
Maloney’s recommendations include smart gun technology to keep children and thieves from using a borrowed or stolen gun, better research about ways to curb gun violence, closing the gun show loophole and banning large ammunition magazines.
Adams, a former police officer, issued a report, “Take Five to Stay Alive,” that identifies five steps, such as encouraging witnesses to speak up and engaging family members, specifically children, in conversations about gun violence, to help reduce its impact in New York.
“Gun violence has created rivers of bloodshed that stain streets from Brooklyn to Chicago, from Lafayette to Tucson, from Aurora to Newtown,” said Adams. “The path of a fatal shot does not end in the body of a slain victim; millions of bullets continue to wreak havoc and grief for families and communities across America. We need a ‘Vision Zero’ for ending the disease that is gun violence and it will take lawmakers, clergy, police, and everyday people working together to bring about a full cure.”
Taking aim at gun violence, New York City’s largest pension fund started the process of divesting public dollars from gun retailers, noted James, who called on the federal government to increase its own gun safety legislation.
“Our nation is continuing to bleed from shooting after shooting, and we must do everything we can to take on the scourge of gun violence,” she said. “We must get guns off our streets, and off our department shelves.”