This is a response—and perhaps a natural one—to a human tragedy or crisis. We saw this response in the wake of 9-11. We saw it during the Covid-19 pandemic. And we’re seeing it again following three mass shootings—in Buffalo, New York, Uvalde, Texas, and Tulsa Oklahoma—that claimed the lives of more than 30 innocent people, including small children.
In this case, the “something” is gun control. In Canada—where no attack even occurred—Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the introduction of legislation that would freeze handgun ownership across the country.
“What this means is that it will no longer be possible to buy, sell, transfer or import handguns anywhere in Canada,” Trudeau said in a press conference.
In the United States, the rhetoric has tended to be more heated but also vague, though some specific proposals have emerged.
Over the weekend, Vice President Kamala Harris called for an all-out ban of “assault weapons.”
“We know what works on this. It includes, let’s have an assault weapons ban,” Harris told reporters in Buffalo after attending the funeral of a victim.
On Thursday, President Joe Biden, while speaking from the White House Cross Hall before a candlelit backdrop, called on Congress to pass new gun control legislation, including a ban on assault weapons.
“How much more carnage are we willing to accept?” Biden asked.