John Lira for Congress

latest newsWeapons Like The Ones I Saw In Iraq Were Used In The Uvalde Mass Shooting

Weapons Like The Ones I Saw In Iraq Were Used In The Uvalde Mass Shooting

TEXAS 23RD CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT

I served two combat tours in Iraq. I never thought I would see weapons in my community reminiscent of the type that my Marines and I used on the battlefield. Yet here we are, again. Nineteen children and three adults dead in another senseless act of gun violence in my home state of Texas. I am heartbroken. I am frustrated. I am seething.

This tragedy comes only 10 days after a racially motivated mass shooting at a grocery store in Buffalo, New York, that killed 10 people. Nearly a decade after 20 first-graders and six adults were murdered in Newtown, Connecticut. I mourn with the victims’ families and stand in solidarity with Uvalde, a small, predominantly Hispanic town 85 miles west of San Antonio.

As a gun owner and a veteran, I understand the many reasons to possess a firearm. I do not comprehend our leaders’ inability to enact bipartisan gun safety reform. Especially with the breakneck rate at which these horrific events continue to rip our neighborhoods, families and country apart.

FBI data reveals an upward trend in the frequency of mass shootings and killing sprees that span multiple locations. The FBI designated 61 active shooter events in 2021, a 50% increase from the previous year.

When will it end? When will Congress act? The shooting in Uvalde is the most recent reminder that our society values gun ownership more than education. More than mental health services. More than innocent human lives. I support two pieces of legislation that Tony Gonzales, the incumbent representing Uvalde in Congress, voted against: the Bipartisan Background Checks Act and the Violence Against Women Act, which contain common-sense solutions to prevent guns from falling into the hands of those who aim to commit violence.

Without measures to prevent gun violence or prohibit the mentally unstable from accessing a firearm, it is only a matter of time before another community is thrust into the national spotlight. We need to reconfigure our priorities. We need to limit access to combat weapons, and we need to hold our leaders in office accountable for their failure to ensure that our communities are safe places to live, work, shop, pray and study.

“The shooting in Uvalde is the most recent reminder that our society values gun ownership more than education. More than mental health services. More than innocent human lives.”

m o r e m o r e m o r e m o r e m o r e m o r e

A True Texan
For Texas

John is the son of a Mexican American family of four in southeast San Antonio, a United States Marine Corps veteran, a dedicated father and husband, a devoted parishioner at St. Benedict’s Catholic Church, and a proud Texan.