U.S. Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Wednesday took aim at lax gun control laws in mostly Republican-led states and the gun industry lobby, which she accused of spending hundreds of millions of dollars in “blood money” to obstruct reform. supported by most Americans.
“Let’s talk about something more important to lobbyists and the arms industry than children… Let’s talk about profit.”
The New York Democrat, who sits on the House Oversight Committee, spoke at a hearing in which people affected by mass shootings, including last month’s killings in New York and Texas, gave harrowing testimonies of how the epidemic of gun violence in the United States changed their lives forever. .
“Let’s talk about the facts here,” she said. “There’s no discussion of gun violence in New York without talking about the ‘iron pipeline’ i.e. Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina North, Virginia, Pennsylvania and an honorable mention for Ohio, where probably 70% of firearms illegally trafficked into New York comes from.”
“There’s no discussion of gun violence in Chicago let alone Indiana,” the Squad member added. “Because the mothers we need to comfort are losing children to the guns, carnage and lawlessness unleashed by these states.”
Comparing the 288 US school shootings between 2009 and 2018 with the five such incidents that took place in Canada, France, Germany, Italy, Japan and the UK combined during the same period , Ocasio-Cortez claimed that “this is not normal”. “
“Not only is this not normal, but it is internationally embarrassing and delegitimized for the United States,” she said. “For all the billions and trillions that this body allows in the name of national security, we can’t even keep our children safe from having their schools turned into a war zone.”
“Now let’s talk about why,” the MP continued. Let’s talk about something more important to lobbyists and the arms industry than children… Let’s talk about profit.”
“It’s about blood money,” she claimed, noting later that the National Rifle Association (NRA) “spent about $250 million in 2020 alone” to lobby against the gun control legislation, more than double the salary of the 535 members of Congress combined. .
“There’s also this discussion of anything but a gun, but that [mass shootings] are about violent people,” Ocasio-Cortez added. “But we’re doing nothing to address the real root cause of misogyny where two-thirds of mass shootings are related to domestic violence, or the emergence of white supremacy, radicalization, mass incarceration and poverty.”