The following statement is by Vermont Senate President Pro Tempore Becca Balint. She is a Democratic candidate for U.S. Congress.
I didn’t sleep last night. I kept thinking: What kind of nation are we when we watch our school children get gunned down and do nothing about it? Littleton, Red Lake, Newtown, Pittsburg, Parkland, Buffalo, Uvalde and too many other communities. We should do more than feel sickened and outraged by it all.
Today, grieve for those beautiful humans killed in yet another depraved massacre, but tomorrow I am asking all of us to organize and MARCH and DEMAND change. It is the very least we can do for all those devastated families.
We don’t have to live with these horrors. The slaughter of our children is not the price we have to pay for freedom.
This is a man-made epidemic and we cannot pretend that the answer is out of reach.
Americans overwhelmingly support criminal background checks and other sensible gun laws. We want change. We have wanted change for years, but Congress refuses to act. Comprehensive gun safety legislation must be brought to the floor of the House for a vote. Let parents of school children know where every single member stands. The Senate must end the filibuster, then expand background checks and waiting periods for people who do not pass a background check. The Senators protecting a centuries old procedural rule— as our children are murdered—are betraying their oath to protect and serve the American people.
I have seen the power of parents when they demand change, I have seen high school students speak with righteous anger and brilliance and move mountains. Here in Vermont I have been part of the collective force to change gun laws in the face of empty rhetoric and we have saved lives. We must take every legal measure available to us to stop the murder of our children.