Kentuckiana gun control debate underway after CT massacre - wave3.com-Louisville News, Weather & Sports

Kentuckiana gun control debate underway after CT massacre

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Hal Rogers (Source: http://halrogers.house.gov/) Hal Rogers (Source: http://halrogers.house.gov/)
Ed Whitfield (Source: http://whitfield.house.gov/) Ed Whitfield (Source: http://whitfield.house.gov/)
John Yarmuth spoke about gun control on Monday. John Yarmuth spoke about gun control on Monday.

LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) – He's been too silent on gun control during his 6 years in Congress and in light of the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre, Representative John Yarmuth (D-KY 3) says no more.

Yarmuth got emotional as he talked about his plans to be part of President Barack Obama's call for meaningful action after 20 students and seven adults were killed in Newtown, Connecticut. "I promise my constituents, the families of the bereaved in Connecticut, my own family and every American family I will not be silent any longer."

Yarmuth said he plans to co-sponsor legislation that reinstates the assault weapons ban that expired in 2004. He added that would only be part of what needs to be package legislation. He said he also plans to do what he can in terms of increasing school security and mental health assistance.

When it comes to gun control, Yarmuth appears to be the only Kentucky Congressman asking for that type of action right now. In a statement about the gun control issue, Representative Hal Rogers (R-KY 5) said "As we search for understanding and gain minute-by-minute explanations of how an unfathomable tragedy of this magnitude occurred, we must be judicious in our response. However, our immediate focus lies at Sandy Hook Elementary School where our support and prayers are needed most this holiday season."

Republican Representative Ed Whitfield, who serves the western part of the state, said "I will not support any bill that infringes upon our Second Amendment rights. Right now, I think it is important to focus on the victims, and not to try and make political strides in the wake of this tragedy. Millions of people in this nation live peacefully while lawfully owning guns, and any policy should be well thought out and beneficial, not driven by our latest tragedy." 

WHAS Outdoor Radio host Jim Strader said a politician's job is to uphold the constitution. That includes the second amendment. "Quite frankly, I find it appalling and revealing that any politician would use a time that should be for grieving and mourning to push a personal and political agenda."

In homes, schools and businesses across Kentuckiana, people are having discussions about what should be done to stop another massacre like Newtown. That includes the Barber Shop in Okolona, where an National Rifle Association clock hangs across from deer heads and bumper stickers explaining the Second Amendment.

Barber Bruce Gooden Junior said he thinks the first focus should be on media kids are exposed to everyday. "Maybe instead of gun control, maybe all these violent video games, all the ideas on TV that's putting these ideas in kids head."

"I agree that Americans have the rights to defend themselves and their property. I believe it even more fiercely that I have the right you have the right and every child has the right to be safe from guns without having to carry a gun," said Yarmuth.

Requests for statements about the gun control issue to the rest of Kentucky's Congressmen went unanswered.

Copyright 2012 WAVE News. All rights reserved.

WEB EXTRAS: Jaimie 12-17

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Yarmuth emotional during gun control speech