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Connecticut sen. lashes out at NRA: What kind of liberty did Newtown kids have?

By David Edwards
Wednesday, April 10, 2013 12:10 EDT
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Chris Murphy speaks on the Senate floor
 
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Connecticut Sen. Chris Brown (D) on Wednesday made an emotion plea on the Senate floor for lawmakers to come to an agreement and pass new gun control legislation following last year’s mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown.

“This country has gotten so callously used to gun violence, it’s just raindrops, it’s just background noise,” he explained. “The problem is that the NRA doesn’t speak for gun owners like it used to. And yet, we listen to that organization more than we should. Ten years ago the NRA came here and argued for universal background checks in the wake of [the massacre at] Columbine. Today, they oppose those background checks, even though 74 percent of NRA members support universal background checks.”

“I don’t know the exact reason for that, but maybe it’s because increasingly the NRA is financed not by it’s members — by everyday common-sense gun owners — but by the gun industry,” Murphy continued. “Tens of millions of dollars coming into the NRA from the gun industry. A program that actually allows the NRA to make a couple bucks off of every gun that’s sold in many gun stores across the country.”

The Connecticut Democrat pointed out that it was wrong to argue that the Constitution established an “unalienable” or “god-given” right to bear arms.

“Liberty isn’t just about having any gun you want anytime you want it,” Murphy insisted. “Liberty has also got to be about the right to be free from indiscriminate violence. I mean, what kind of liberty did these kids have in that classroom in Newtown being trapped by an assault weapon-wielding madman?”

“But even if we do accept that part of liberty is owning and using a gun then we have to ask ourselves these questions. To what degree are our liberties really infringed upon if we just suggest that there’s a handful of weapons that are too dangerous to own? To what extent are our freedoms trampled upon by just saying you’re going to need to reload your semiautomatic weapon after every ten bullets, rather than after every 30 bullets? How gravely do we really risk tyranny when we just moderately restrain the size of a legally-purchasable clip?”

Watch this video from C-SPAN, broadcast April 10, 2013.

 
David Edwards
David Edwards
David Edwards has served as an editor at Raw Story since 2006. His work can also be found at Crooks & Liars, and he's also been published at The BRAD BLOG. He came to Raw Story after working as a network manager for the state of North Carolina and as as engineer developing enterprise resource planning software. Follow him on Twitter at @DavidEdwards.
 
 
 
 
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