After the rampage at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, US President Joe Biden and First Lady Jill Biden met with the bereaved on Sunday (local time). The Bidens also attended mass in Uvalde with Roman Catholic Archbishop Gustavo García-Siller and paused at 21 white crosses to commemorate the dead. The President refrained from making a speech. Jill Biden laid white flowers at school.
Before leaving for the memorial, the president said he wanted to speak to parents who have their children buried, according to CNN. “There is too much violence, too much fear, too much pain”.
During the killing spree last Tuesday, an 18-year-old shot dead 19 children and two teachers in an elementary school. He used weapons that he had legally acquired. The gunman was killed during a police operation, his motives are unknown.
Since the killing spree, there has been a renewed debate about gun rights in the United States. Biden is pushing for tightening, but he lacks a majority in Congress. Republican politicians reject new measures and criticize Democrats for wanting to “politicize” the tragedy. The Uvalde shooter was mentally ill, said Republican Texas Gov. Greg Abbott.
In the Democratic states of New York and New Jersey, governors have said they want to set a minimum age of 21 to purchase certain guns. In Democratic California, Governor Gavin Newsom wants to push control laws. Currently, firearms can generally be purchased from the age of 18. 28 US states have Republican governors and 22 Democratic.