U.S. President Joe Biden pointed the fingers at the Republicans over gun violence after Monday’s mass shooting in Louisville, Kentucky that left six people dead, including the shooter, and nine others injured.
In another shooting in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday, one man was killed and three other people were hurt at a funeral home when gunfire erupted shortly after a funeral ended for someone who was fatally shot in March.
“How many more Americans must die before Republicans in Congress will act to protect our communities?… It’s long past time that we require safe storage of firearms. Require background checks for all gun sales. Eliminate gun manufacturers’ immunity from liability. We can and must do these things now,” Biden said.
However, it is unlikely that the divided U.S. Congress would approve the legislative proposal as the Republicans control the House of Representatives this term and have advocated for “people’s right to keep and bear arms.”
The National Rifle Association, a very influential gun rights advocacy group, tweeted on Monday night that “criminals love gun control because it keeps their victims defenseless.”
In Monday’s mass shooting in Louisville, a 25-year-old bank employee opened fire at his downtown workplace in the morning and live-streamed the attack, according to the police.
The shooter, identified as Connor Sturgeon who works at the Old National Bank, was killed by police after a shootout.
Following an initial death toll of four, local authorities announced in the evening that a fifth victim, a 57-year-old woman, had died of her injuries, adding to another woman and three men killed in the attack, who were aged between 40 and 64.
Nine people, including two police officers, were taken to the hospital. The Louisville Metropolitan Police Department (LMPD) tweeted on Monday afternoon that one officer, new to the LMPD, remains in critical condition after being shot in the head.
U.S. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell, a Kentucky Republican, also weighed in, saying that he is “devastated by the news coming out of Louisville this morning.”
“Thank you to LMPD and our first responders for your bravery at the scene. We send our prayers to the victims, their families, and the city of Louisville as we await more information,” McConnell said.
The Louisville bank shooting came only two weeks after three children and three adults were killed in a shooting at an elementary school in Nashville, Tennessee.
The New York Times described it as “a stark and surprising statement by the president, who essentially threw up his hands in the face of one of the most intractable problems facing American society.”
There have been 147 mass shootings in the United States so far this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which defines a mass shooting as one in which at least four people are shot, excluding the shooter.
Meanwhile, more than 11,500 people, including hundreds of children and teens, have lost their lives to gun violence in the past three months. The number of children and teens killed by gunfire in the United States increased by 50 percent between 2019 and 2021.
The rise in gun deaths among children and teens is part of a broader recent increase in firearm deaths. In 2021, there were 48,830 gun deaths among Americans of all ages, by far the highest yearly total on record and up 23 percent from the 39,707 recorded in 2019.