Former Representative Gabrielle Giffords Launches Gun Control Drive

The former U.S. Rep. who was shot in the head two years ago launched a national effort Tuesday against gun violence.

Former Representative Gabrielle Giffords of Arizona launched a group aimed at curbing gun violence, promising to work to counter the country’s strong gun lobby. Photo: Barack Obama/Flickr

Giffords, who also owns a gun, is starting the effort called Americans for Responsible Solutions with her husband, former U.S. astronaut Mark Kelly.

“Enough,” the former congresswoman told reporters Tuesday, urging to provide required measures to reduce violence after a string of recent mass shootings.

The news comes as the Obama administration faces a set deadline at the end of this month to propose ways to curb mass violence that continues to grip the USA.

This week saw the administration calling gun owner groups, victims’ organizations and representatives from the video game industry to the White House for discussions, reports CBC News.

Necessity in urgent measure to stop mass shootings comes after a 19-year-old gunman using rifle, legally purchased by his mother, shot dozens of children and adults to death at a school in Newtown, Connecticut, a month ago.

President Barack Obama, who hasn’t been vocal considering gun violence during his first term, called the shooting the worst moment of his presidency and has demanded “real action, right now.”

However, the action on gun violence had to be put off as Congress was caught up in deep debate over fiscal issues.

Giffords alongside with her husband are becoming a prominent voice for gun control efforts, especially the recent attack.

The couple even wrote in an opinion piece, saying that their Americans for Responsible Solutions, a political action committee, would help raise money to support greater gun control efforts.

“Achieving reforms to reduce gun violence and prevent mass shootings will mean matching gun lobbyists in their reach and resources,” they wrote.

The National Rifle Association, which is considered to be the most powerful gun lobby in the country, said after the Connecticut shooting that the solution would be putting an armed security officer in every school.

In the opinion piece, Kelly and Giffords also criticized ‘lawmakers’ inaction’, saying that “in response to a horrific series of shootings … Congress has done something quite extraordinary — nothing at all.”

Monte Frank, a father and an attorney who lives in Newtown, promised to help Giffords any way he can.

He is organizing a team of 26 riders to bicycle from Sandy Hook to Washington, possibly this spring, to draw attention to the issue of gun control.

“I would have thought that Congress would have done something when one of their own was the victim of unnecessary gun violence,” Frank said.

“Now that she has come this far with her rehabilitation that she is able to get out in front of the issue, I think it’s awesome,” he added.

Connecticut Lt. Gov. Nancy Wyman, supported Giffords and her husband for “their remarkable strength and leadership on this issue.”

“Their visit to Newtown last week was an inspiration for the families they met and I am confident their new effort will help our nation reach reasonable reforms that balance the rights of gun owners with the need to protect the public from gun violence,” Wyman said.

The former U.S. representative was shot and severely wounded when gunman Jared Loughner opened fire outside a Tucson supermarket where she was holding a meeting on January 8, 2011. Six people were killed and 13 wounded in that attack.

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