Vancouver, Canada (JTA) — Cheryl Stumbo, a victim in the 2006 Seattle Jewish federation shootings, has begun advocating for stricter gun control following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings in Newtown, Conn.
After years of mass shootings, Stumbo decided to use her personal experience to fight the American gun lobby by telling her story, she told the Seattle Times in an interview published on Sunday. She said she believes the more visible gun violence victims are, the quicker public opinion will shift.
As President Barack Obama seeks support for his sweeping gun control reforms, and states enact their own legislation -- including the nation's toughest in New York -- a faith-based coalition is promoting a national Gun Violence Prevention Sabbath.
After Newtown, some firearm owners ready to consider control measures.
Chavie Lieber / JTA
The day Eric Schaefer learned that a .233 caliber semiautomatic Bushmaster rifle — a type of weapon he owned — was used to kill 26 people in Newtown, Conn., he sold his rifle to local law enforcement near his home in Scottsdale, Ariz.
Schaefer, a 40-year-old commercial real estate agent, says he has been hit by an unshakable feeling of shame, and he no longer wants his two children exposed to the many weapons he owns for sporting purposes — guns he keeps locked up and away from the house.
Hours after Adam Lanza executed 20 first graders and 6 adults in Sandy Hook elementary school, five minutes from my synagogue, Congregation Adath Israel of Newtown, I spoke with my good friend and colleague, Monsignor Robert Weiss, about the “culture of violence” in the United States.
As America continues to mourn the victims of the horrific slaughter at Sandy Hook Elementary School, the issue of gun control has predictably and rightfully been placed back at the center of public discourse. Within the Jewish community, the debate has centered on two distinct but related issues. The first concerns the State of Israel, namely, whether its relatively low rate of firearm deaths, despite the ubiquity of guns and the military in Israeli society, results from better gun laws or from a healthier cultural attitude toward weapons.
Samuel Wurzelbacher, who gained fame in 2008 as “Joe the Plumber” who posed a question to Barack Obama -- and is now running for Congress in Ohio -- is garnering unwanted attention for suggesting that Nazi gun control laws contributed to the Holocaust.
“In 1939, Germany established gun control,” a narrator says in a campaign video posted Monday for Wurzelbacher, who is seen shooting fruit and vegetables with a shotgun. “From 1939 to 1945, 6 million Jews and 7 million others, unable to defend themselves, were exterminated.”