The Dream Vs. The Bullet: An MLK Day Call

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President Obama, Majority Leader Reid and Speaker Boehner,

You have spoken passionately about your devotion to the American people, their hopes, dreams, struggles and health. You have eloquently acknowledged the heroes of last week’s tragedy. And you stood for a moment of silence in recognition of the suffering and death we all witnessed in Tucson. You have each served this nation with determination and distinction. Thank you for your devotion to the American people.

But leadership is not based solely on words. The American people need action now. Will you stand together and work to end the gun violence that traumatizes our country? Surely banning high capacity magazines is one area of common ground to help end the senseless slaughter of Americans by military style weapons in the hands of the wrong people.

Mr. President, you have often stated your admiration of Martin Luther King, Jr. and Abraham Lincoln. Just this weekend, Judge Roll was killed and Congress Member Giffords shot in the head as a result of high capacity magazines readily available to anyone who asks.

What would Dr. King or Abraham Lincoln have done in the aftermath of this horror? How better to honor the memory of Dr. King a man who dedicated his life to non violence, than to stand at the Lincoln Memorial this weekend and announce your support for banning high capacity magazine clips? Surely the fact that both these leaders were killed by deranged gunmen will resonate with Americans.

Majority Leader Reid, you were opposed last November by a candidate who suggested Second Amendment remedies were available in response to actions of Congress. As a supporter of Constitution and its amendments, you are in a unique position to correct the impression that armed insurrection is supported by the Constitution.

You can lead the Senate and implore sensible people across the country including hunters and gun owners to join you in condemning this rhetoric and support the banning of high capacity magazines.

Speaker Boehner, you have said you worry today’s youth will not reach the American Dream as you have. You can help ensure more children live to adulthood by enacting responsible gun laws to keep our youth safe.

Christina Green was a student leader in her school. She went to meet a member of Congress that sunny morning in the hopes of learning something as she took her first step in democratic participation. Instead, Christina was shot and killed, assassinated as surely as was President Lincoln and Martin Luther King, Jr., yet she was only in elementary school.

How many young people are now thinking that public service poses a danger? How many parents are now second-guessing their plans to have their teens volunteer on campaigns or in Congress? A clearly deranged man was able to arm himself and kill the dreams of our youth.

You can lead Congress in banning the sale of high capacity ammunition magazines, such as the one used to snuff out the life of Christina Green, a little girl with big dreams.

Our children can only have a chance at the American Dream if they live long enough to try, and if our leaders act with courage.