Connecticut school shooting, where 27 persons, including 20 kids, were gunned down, has raised once again the questions of stricter gun laws in US.
American politics is plagued by timidity and paralyzed by opportunism whenever it considers taking action to curb gun violence. No other developed country in the world has these massacres on such a regular basis. In no comparable nation do citizens have such easy access to guns.
Who will bring in the badly-needed law? Can President Obama do it? Now that he is elected for the second term, Obama must use all his powers to pass laws which will make possession of firearms extremely difficult.
Faced with intense lobbying by the National Rifle Association and other gun groups, and fearful of a backlash from gun-owning voters, most Democrats have stopped trying to pass new laws.
However, supporters of gun control said, two factors might shake Democrats out of their passive stance: the increasing frequency of mass killings (12 were gunned down in a cinema hall in Colorado in July) and the defencelessness of the kids killed at the school in Newtown, Connecticut.
New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who runs a coalition of mayors on gun policy, said President Obama should not be deterred and should send legislation to Congress.
“We have heard all the rhetoric before. What we have not seen is leadership – not from the White House and not from Congress. That must end today,” Bloomberg said in a statement.
US lawmakers have not approved a major new gun law since 1994, and they let a ban on certain semiautomatic rifles known as assault weapons expire in 2004.
During the prayer vigil, President Obama said, “….the causes of such violence are complex, and that is true. No single law, no set of laws can eliminate evil from the world or prevent every senseless act of violence in our society, but that can’t be an excuse for inaction. Surely we can do better than this.”
It requires a great leadership for Obama to overcome all odds to pass the law what earlier Presidents have failed to do.