Jan 8, 2013 1:11 PM
Daniel Hernandez, the intern who rushed to Rep. Gabrielle Giffords' side when she was shot exactly 2 years ago, says he is shocked and saddened that more has not been done on a federal level to curb gun violence.
"Coming back and reflecting about the last 2 years is really difficult for me because after something where a member of congress has been injured using gun violence you'd think there would have been more done at this point, but since then we've seen Aurora, Oak Creek. We have seen places like Newtown just a few weeks ago.
We see that there are a lot of fixes and a lot of common sense policies that can be enacted at the federal level to actually make sure we prevent tragedies like Newtown and Tucson from happening again.
We've essentially set up 2 systems. We have one where people buy guns through official and licensed gun sellers where you have to pass a background check and another where in many states you don't have to pass a background check if you purchase through the internet or at a gun show or thru any private sales. So we have people picking between 2 lines at a security checkpoint at the airport-- one where you have to go thru security and on where you don't. And it's madness that we haven't done anything to universalize that system.
We have seen rollbacks in laws which promote safety. The assault weapons ban which expired in 2004 was a big tragedy. It wasn't a perfect bill. No bill is ever perfect but it was at least a measure to try to stem the amount of weapons that people could purchase and type of weapons that people could purchase.
My family is a hunting family. I've gone shooting with my dad. If someone doesn't know how to take down an deer, an elk or even a rabbit with 10 rounds, I'll take them out there and show them how to shoot so you don't need those 30 rounds because there's really no reason to have a weapon of mass destruction like an assault rifle because that's mean for one thing and that's killing as many people as quickly as possible.
The way that we keep this going it by not focusing on any one incident and saying we've had enough. There have been too many things that have happened. There have been too many tragedies and it's not enough to stop by and stand still and say we don't want to politicize one event. We're not politicizing one event.
We can't stop gun violence. That's never going to happen but we can make it harder for criminals to purchase weapons and do mass shootings like have happened in places all over this country in the last 20 years. There's no excuse for standing back and saying we're not going to do anything this time. It's been far too long, there have been far too many deaths."