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After the Texas massacre, demonstrations in the United States to “stop the massacre” of guns

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Thousands of Americans demonstrated Saturday in the streets of the country to demand better supervision of firearms after recent killings, including that in a school in Texas which shocked the United States. In Washington, thousands gathered under a gloomy sky to “stop the massacre”, according to one sign among others: “a child is worth more than your gun”, “enough is enough”.

Thousands of Americans demonstrated Saturday in the streets of the country to demand better supervision of firearms after recent killings, including that in a school in Texas which shocked the United States. In Washington, thousands gathered under a gloomy sky to “stop the massacre”, according to one sign among others: “a child is worth more than your gun”, “enough is enough”.

“The will of the American people is thwarted by a minority”

“I join them in reiterating my call to Congress: Do something,” US President Joe Biden wrote on Twitter in support of the protests in hundreds of cities across the country. “The will of the American people is thwarted by a minority,” said Cynthia Martins, who lives in Washington, in the crowd, targeting the Republican Party which opposes the reforms.

His association had organized a demonstration in the same place nine years ago, after the bloodbath in Sandy Hook, which had left 26 dead including 20 children in 2012.

“We are here almost ten years later, and almost nothing has been done”, regrets this 63-year-old woman. Near her were installed thousands of vases with white and orange flowers, representing the increase in violence in the country since 2020, the year during which 45,222 people were killed by firearm, according to the association at the origin of this memorial, Giffords.

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“People are fed up”

On May 24, an 18-year-old high school student carrying an assault rifle killed 19 schoolchildren and two female teachers at an elementary school in the Texas town of Uvalde, near the Mexican border. A few days earlier, an 18-year-old white supremacist had killed ten black people in Buffalo, in the northeastern United States.

“We are here to say: enough!” Said Garnell Whitfield, son of an 86-year-old woman killed in Buffalo. “We are here to stand with those who have the courage to demand reasonable gun legislation,” he added. These last two massacres, and the hundreds of shootings that do not make the headlines, have revived the debate on the regulation of access to firearms.

Saturday’s call for action comes from March for Our Lives, the movement founded by victims and survivors of the high school shooting in Parkland, Florida, which had already organized a huge demonstration in March 2018. in Washington. People “are fed up, and it’s time to push Congress to do something,” March for Our Lives figurehead David Hogg wrote in a Fox News op-ed on Friday.

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Negotiations in Congress

On Saturday, hundreds of people demonstrated in Parkland and in major cities across the country such as New York, where Mayor Eric Adams joined the procession.

Joe Biden, taking up the elements of an impassioned speech delivered on June 2 following the massacre at the Uvalde school, called for his part on elected officials to “pass common sense laws on gun safety “.

The Democratic president again listed the reforms he wants from Congress: banning assault rifles and high-capacity magazines; strengthen background checks, including psychological checks, on buyers; require individuals to keep their weapons locked up; encourage reporting in cases of fear of action and make arms manufacturers more accountable. “We cannot betray the American people again,” he wrote on Twitter.

Limited room for maneuver for Joe Biden

Joe Biden has repeatedly promised to act against this scourge that successive governments have been unable to stem, but his room for maneuver is limited by his very narrow majority and the opposition of Republicans. The House of Representatives voted on Wednesday a text that would ban the sale of semi-automatic rifles to those under 21 and that of high-capacity magazines.

But he has almost no chance of passing the Senate, where the support of ten conservatives is necessary to reach a qualified majority. At the same time, discussions are taking place between parliamentarians from both parties to try to find a compromise text.

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