Lawmakers disagree on how to solve mass shooting problem
The Senate Judiciary Committee held a hearing on reducing gun violence in the wake of Monday’s attack in Colorado.
Eighteen people have been killed in two mass shootings in the span of one week – eight in the Atlanta-area and 10 in Boulder, Colorado.
"We see the problem were up against as a public health crisis. So, what should we do about it? We won't solve this crisis with just prosecutions after funerals, we need prevention before shooting,” said Sen. Dick Durbin, of Illinois.
Both Republicans and Democrats on the committee agreed prevention is the best way to stop mass shootings. But they've disagreed on how to do so, and how far to go. Some Democrats say they need to expand background checks and ban assault rifles. Some Republicans say preventing criminals from gaining access to firearms is the solution.
Organizations in Westchester are calling for stricter gun laws while other groups reiterate the issue is not about guns.
Local psychologists say the violence only adds to the year of fear and uncertainty we've been through. The Westchester chapter of Moms Demand Action is calling for gun reform once again.
"We're not against the Second Amendment, we just think not everybody should be able to have a gun if they've got mental illness or they've got issues," says Katherine Schowalter.
President Biden is calling on Congress to expand background checks and ban assault weapons.
The gunman in Boulder reportedly used an AR-15. The gunman in Atlanta reportedly bought his gun just hours before the shooting.
While some people are worried about mass shootings, gun sales have actually skyrocketed during the pandemic.
"President Biden very clearly stated he wanted to enact stricter gun control, it all led to people buying more guns," said Ben Rosenshine, who owns a gun shop in Elmsford. He says firearms are not the root cause of the continuous mass shootings.
"It's much more a mental health issue than a firearm issue because you can use almost anything as a destructive device,” he said. "I don't know how you're going to make a background check more strict. Often times people can legitimately buy a firearm because there's nothing in their background that says that they shouldn't."