Gun control debate heats up as Trump backtracks on support for background checks

BERGENFIELD, NJ — All across America, communities are hoping they won’t ever have to get public notices like what Louisiana State University sent out on Tuesday afternoon.

“Today at 2:30 pm, LSU police received a report of an armed intruder inside Coates Hall.”

The school which was hosting freshman orientation was placed on lockdown while police investigated, and soon determined that there was no shooting threat.

The flood of first responders at LSU has been a common knee jerk reaction to mass shooting incidents in the country, especially after the attacks in El Paso and Dayton earlier this month that left at least 31 people dead.

The frustration has boiled over to the streets.

Demonstrators are calling for legislators to pass bills on background checks, all gun sales and on red flag laws, a measure that would temporarily prevent someone in crisis from accessing firearms if they pose a danger to themselves or others.

This past weekend, rallies were held in dozens of towns and cities across the country.

All throughout this month, while the senators are back home for recess, calls for gun reform legislation continue, with activists showing up at senators’ district offices and more rallies planned in various cities the coming weeks.

“We understand that violence can happen to any safe place, that’s why we equip our police department with the necessary tools to prevent this kind of tragedy,” said councilman Arvin Amatorio.

Fil-Am Councilman Arvin Amatorio, who is running for Bergenfield mayor this November 5th, said gun violence, whether from mass shootings or local crime activities, pose complex challenges on smaller towns.

“Really banning these weapons absolutely beyond the paygrade of the council. We have roles. The federal government regulates these things. The state regulates these things. New Jersey has one of the strictest gun laws and still there are violence that occur.”

Meanwhile, President Donald Trump faced backlash when reports came out that he seemed to be backing away again on universal background checks.

He reportedly told a National Rifle Association leader on Tuesday that it is off the table. This happened after he told reporters earlier that the U.S. already has very strong background checks.

“The people that a lot of the people that put me where I am are strong believers in the second amendment, and I am also. And we have to be very careful about that. You know they call it the slippery slope and all of a sudden everything gets taken away. We’re not going to let that happen.”

On Wednesday, Trump denied the report and instead gave his reassurance that something is getting done on gun legislation.

According to non-profit group Gun Violence Archive, which tracks real-time gun violence incidents in the country, as of Tuesday night, there have been nearly 36,000 gun-related incidents so far this year.

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