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Taking action after Newtown shooting
Newtown residents are channeling their anguish and anger over the Sandy Hook shooting into action.
December 18th, 2012
01:56 PM ET

Taking action after Newtown shooting

By Steve Kastenbaum, CNN

Follow on Twitter: @SKastenbaumCNN

Editor's Note: Listen to the full story in our player above, and join the conversation in our comments section below.

(CNN) –  The anguish and anger that many Newtown residents feel is being channeled into action.

A few days after the killings, a grass roots movement was born in a meeting room at the local library. Friends and neighbors formed Newtown United.

[4:56] “How do we prevent this from happening? How do we let other people know that we need to do something about this and this probably won’t be the last time this happens. But how can we can try to minimize this from every happening again or the probabilities,” said Lee Shull, one of the founders of the group, “Really, waking people up; wondering when is the country going to wake up.”

Newtown United residents in D.C. to talk gun control

All ideas are on the table as they push local and national elected officials to take some sort of action.

[1:45] “I can only sit back for so long and stop asking the questions why is this happening,” said Mary Sireci, a local teacher. “I feel that I need to be part of a movement that can elicit change. When Columbine happened I thought it would never happen again because it was so horrific. We’ve got to be more proactive and really step it up and make change happen.”

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soundoff (38 Responses)
  1. KevinP

    Limit magazine capacity to either 15 or 10 and institute a license program. Forget the call-in NICS check per gun. Get a more robust background check done for the license. Require the license to buy either a gun, multiple guns, or so much as one round of ammunition. No license, no bullets or guns. Renew the license every 3 or 5 years so we get periodic review on the person. Committed a felony or domestic violence, no renewal. DUI or drug use, no renewal. Psychiatric issue, no license. At the same time, if I have my license, and I transport the gun safely, don't make me a felon for crossing the border from Vermont to upstate New York to go target shooting with my buddy.

    December 20, 2012 at 3:23 pm | Report abuse |
  2. Ken

    Ban the violent video games too. Some people are easily influence by games and movies.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Shawn Poland

      yup right along with the psychotropic drugs that make people focus on one thing at a time, and for some pre brainwashed people, its killing others! but cnn wont tell you that because big pharma is a sponsor of their lies and distractions and parade of what feels vs what is!

      December 18, 2012 at 8:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • W

      pacman i too? give me a break ..whitch game did he take his guns from...ummm his non video game mother who had these guns available to the murderer...get a brain

      December 19, 2012 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  3. Ken

    Ban semi automatic weapon. There is no reason for civilians to own such weapons.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      " the right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed"

      December 18, 2012 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
      • W

        Dude even the nra has a brain. What happened to yours?

        December 19, 2012 at 12:29 am | Report abuse |
    • W

      Well that's not enough. any gun can kill kids and innocents. two hand guns and they are good to go kill a bunch of our kids. Think about it you do like kids?

      December 19, 2012 at 12:26 am | Report abuse |
  4. Will Holtzman

    "The world as we have created it is a process of our thinking. It cannot be changed without changing our thinking.” ― Albert Einstein

    December 18, 2012 at 7:49 pm | Report abuse |
    • huehuehue

      Daniel Webster: "A strong conviction that something must be done is the parent of many bad measures."

      December 18, 2012 at 9:15 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Jim

    Press on NewTown. You may be our only hope to stop the insanity.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  6. CNN Reader

    Another problem may be the quality of medicines... one article mentioned this perpetrator was on Fanapt (Iloperidone) .. I do not know if that is true or not.

    However so many of the antidepressants and anti-psychotics, have side effects like, 'thoughts of suicide,' and 'mania.'

    It seems extremely important, not to give medicine to someone depressed or psychotic, that would cause that.

    The other problem is, when they make weapons, or bigger magazines illegal it seems the criminals have ways to get them.

    It seems many people die every day, every week and so on of gun deaths. A woman was put in jail for 20 years in Florida for firing a gun into a wall, after he husband threatened her. While people who shoot multiple people (such as the Indianapolis Black Expo shooting, which had no fatalities,) he got a plea for 8 years.

    One person shot an inanimate object, a wall, and got 20 yrs. The other person shot about 10 people including children and got 8 years.

    For people who just want to go hunting or target practice, it would be nice if they could put a computer chip in the weapon. It would be nice if zones such as schools, air ports, safe places, etc., could have a software system that could identify those chips and that those weapons would simply not work in 'safe zones.'

    People who get weapons for home protection, could have weapons that only fire it has been programmed for that person's usage. This might give gun owners more control of weapons. However, you have news stories where parents leave kids home, and during robberies those kids are able to use the homes weapons / guns to defend against robbers.

    So it's just going to be a complicated debate I suppose. It seems there are several people who want to go into social work / nursing, etc... who graduate and are looking for jobs. However lots of towns / cities / states, seem not to put emphasis on that sort of work. Because the problem is 'invisible,' not tangible. So some states save a lot of money by withholding those funds. The answer, I believe, is to make services and quality medicine (that has perhaps not been developed yet) available, in a cost effective way. One problem is the towns / cities / states, basically say it would cost a lot to provide care.

    It seems they could figure out a way to provide excellent care and make it cost effective.

    In this instance those, in Connecticut, if the mother was worried about leaving her son alone, it would have been great if she could have programed the actual weapons to only be used by her... and if she needed to give her son meds, or have him treated, I wish there was the option to use something that would not have side effects like 'mania,' if that was the case.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Grieving for America

    Let's put this in context: 9/11 Airplanes killed 3000.....did the Government ban Airplanes? It takes a special kind of stupid to think that stiffer gun laws will keep guns out of the hands of criminals.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • benevolent_despot

      and it takes another special kind of stupid to refuse to acknowledge that no sane, law-abiding civilian needs to possess high-capacity magazines for a gun that can fire as fast as one can pull the trigger. The fact is that this country is full of people who are not capable of adequately managing such weapons, whether because they're too unbalanced themselves (like the shooter) or too irresponsible (like his mother.) I generally come down in favor of individual liberties, bot not when such liberties could potentially result in the slaughter of children. Your right to have whatever killing tool you can afford is not worth that. If you want to defend yourself, there's something seriously wrong if you can't do it without firing 30 rounds before reloading.

      December 18, 2012 at 7:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Treyanas

      That analogy is ludicrous. Apply it in reverse. Nobody has been killed by nuclear weapons in over 50 years, so let's make private ownership and use legal. Or more to the point, airline safety has improved dramatically (fatalities per passenger mile) in the last fifty years in large part due to government regulation.

      The issue at this point isn't whether people should be allowed to own guns, at least not for most of us. The issue is whether better regulation – banning large magazine weapons, background checks, and a few other actions – could reduce the problem,

      I would point out that there are far fewer gun killings in developed countries with tighter gun regulations than ours. We are uniquely gun loose and our gun murder rate shows it.

      December 18, 2012 at 7:51 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ken

      What a stupid analogy. Airplane is a must for global commerce and travel. How does leisure guns aid in global economy ? And the terrorists in 911 did use gun to take control of the plane, if I am not mistaken.

      December 18, 2012 at 7:58 pm | Report abuse |
      • Mike

        You're mistaken.

        If the rights guaranteed by the 2nd Amend. were as abused as the 1st, half this country would be dead.

        December 18, 2012 at 8:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      What a stupid idea, banning semi-automatic weapons from civilians. Sorry liberals if you want it that way move to Canada. George Washington said it best.

      ‎"A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from ANY who might attempt to abuse them, which would INCLUDE their own government." - George Washington

      December 18, 2012 at 8:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • W

      Or a special kind of GOV to do the right thing. the more guns there are the more nuts will get them and kill our kids. Easy solution get rid of all these guns!!!!! like 1 plus one is 2

      December 19, 2012 at 12:35 am | Report abuse |
  8. MD

    I think we need to talk about what is realistic ...Govt is never going to ban the gun due to political pressure..and there are people who are proponent of keeping the gun due to whatever reason say it safety from Animals or what so ever. IBut there is something which can be done ..I think govt should pass a law that you need a license to keep the gun and which would cost $ 10000 and there is annual fee of $ 1000 each year...Whoever is in possession of gun should return it immediately or pay the fees to get a license...I am sure people would flock like they do around thanks giving to return the guns...I am sure this way we can atleast keep the guns from out of those people who buy it for a hobby or passion because its very cheap and easy to buy ...People who are in real need of it better pay for it and if you can not afford then return / discard it right away.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
  9. gahh

    After what the poor people in Newtown have been through, now we learn the Westboro Church of hate, has decided to go to Newtown, and do a rally for Satan. They claim to be on the side of God, but all they spread is hatred for everyone, and everything. Fred Phelps and the inbred members of his church, are the true meaning of psychopaths. How can anybody be locked up for having mental problems, when this bunch is allowed to run free?

    December 18, 2012 at 7:18 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Jeff

    How many of the gun related murders are drug related? How many murders has drug prohibition resulted in? Seems to me the killings in Chicago daily are majority gang related. Ya, ya – dont think too much. Take away our gang culture and prohibitionist policies and you will see a much larger drop in gun violence than you would banning guns. But that would take thinking – check Brazil, check Mexico – much tougher gun laws, but higher rates of crime for very similar reasons. Also many of the nations you mentioned have wealth distributed much more equitably but again, I dont know to make your brain start smoking while you attempt to take this all in.

    December 18, 2012 at 7:01 pm | Report abuse |
  11. jthoward

    tim Ross is speaking NRA talking points. Of course guns kill, they don't pull their own triggers. It is not a violation of the 2nd Amendment to ban assault weapons. They didnt' even exist when the 2nd Amendment was written. And if they had, be assured that the wise Founding Fathers would never have enshrined them as a right for all citizens. The full text of the 2nd Amendment reads: "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed." The Founding Fathers wanted a Militia that could bear arms in case the Mother country, England, attacked again. This is a far cry from how it is being used by rabid gun rights types.

    December 18, 2012 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jeff

      You do not read much. The first 10 rights are individual freedoms and that cannot be disputed. They just fought the government that was attempting to disarm them and you think their first thought was to disarm us from our government? Guns were required to live back then – there werent grocery stores so you think they were saying that only government sanctioned military should be allowed to own guns? You really do not deserve to have an opinion on the subject at this point – you should just go read then come back to us when you are done. You can start by viewing the revision history of the 2nd ammendment before it was ratified if you need a better understanding of what they were trying to communicate.

      December 18, 2012 at 6:50 pm | Report abuse |
    • luvUamerica

      A comma is what the Supreme court used, to distinguish between personal gun ownership and a state sanctioned and trained personnel. The 2nd amendment is a very ambiguos statement which is left for Justice's to intepret.

      December 18, 2012 at 7:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • W

      very Moot piont you have. Al it takes is some nut to take one reg pistol w a couple mags and kill our kids. period End Done DEAD! Get that?

      December 19, 2012 at 12:39 am | Report abuse |
  12. Jeff

    And if you take a self defense course you will learn that within 10ft a knife is more fatal than a gun.

    December 18, 2012 at 6:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • InMyHappyPlace

      WHAT?? Not the weapons that are available today. And really, probably not since the days of the single load firearm. And the only person that would tell you something lame like that is the guy trying to get you in his lame class.

      December 18, 2012 at 7:02 pm | Report abuse |
  13. tim Ross

    By saying the cause of this horrible event is the firearm is a gross misunderstanding of the facts. The instrument used could have been a car filled with fertilyzer and fuel. The same day of this event another very similar event took place in China, only with a knife. I believe if someone wants to own a firearm then they should do so responsibly. This means making access very restricted, and not allowing mentally ill people handle them or have knowledge as to how they can access them. Timothy McVay created a mass killing machine with a truck. He did not require a firearm. Although firearms are labeled the firearm is a tool that requires security mearsures inorder to own one. I have been involved in law enforcemenmt for almost 30 yearws and unless the owner takes measures to secure a firearm, it will not be in many occassions. I also to not believe that civilians should own full auto rifles and supressors.Yes we hunt with these rifles but not with full auto. Supressors are mandatory in some countries for sound preservation, not in this country. If some of our laws were followed we may find that there will be better control of firearms. The justice system is not doing favors to innocent citizens when they allow killers or firearms to be un secured. Guns are why this country is a formidal force to invade. The people are why we cannot control our killing rate.

    December 18, 2012 at 2:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jay

      Yes, but the children did not die in China. Because it was a knife. There was only one Timothy Mcvay. But there were many Lanzas just within this year (Oregon mall shooting and etc). Look around the world. See Europe or Asia and see how many gun shootings they have. Gun control is necessary.

      December 18, 2012 at 6:37 pm | Report abuse |
      • Jeff

        There are many stories of fatal mass knife attacks, you just do not want to focus on them. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Akihabara_massacre

        December 18, 2012 at 6:43 pm | Report abuse |
        • Jay

          So 7 deaths? This is it for Japan, right? As long as I know, in Asia, not many of these killings occur. In America, 7 school shootings in 2012 alone! This does not count mall shootings either!

          December 18, 2012 at 6:51 pm | Report abuse |
        • Jeff

          Ban knives – you can cut down on a quarter of killings in the US. Ban guns and you will drop the other 3/4 down to 50% because criminals still still have them and you will raise knife killings by about another 25%. http://www.nytimes.com/2009/04/28/nyregion/28knives.html?_r=0

          December 18, 2012 at 6:58 pm | Report abuse |
        • Steve

          yah yah. Cars kill more people than guns. Knives are used to kill people too, blah blah blah. The only purpose for a gun is to kill, maime or destroy. The reason that we don't ban cars and knives as all of you gun genius' say is that you can use a knife for cutting bread, to eat with, etc etc. You drive to work in your car, to school, to baseball practice etc etc. You don't drive a gun to work do you? Does someone really need to point that out to you?

          December 18, 2012 at 7:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jay

      and Tim McVeigh seems like he got his interests started from fire arms. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Timothy_McVeigh#Childhood

      December 18, 2012 at 6:48 pm | Report abuse |
      • lgr

        What is more important to you, innocent children or your lust for arms?

        December 18, 2012 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • LIndsay Brighton

      Ya -ya change the subject – use false analogies. There are around 9000 gun homicides a year in the USA – thats not including accidental deaths, suicides – you name it. The equals around 24 per day and has remained the same in the past few years. This is light years above the per capita murder rate of any other respectable, modern, civilized country. Depending you your definition I mean places like the UK, Japan, Canada, Norway, Sweden, France, Italy and many more. I tried to mention a few cause I knew your come back will be 'what about Iraq, and South Africa'. Thats ok if we want to but ourselves in their league but I thought this was a 'great' nation.

      December 18, 2012 at 6:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • JimInOC

      Hey Tim... Take your NRA talking points somewhere else... May be to Yemen or Afghanistan... They may appreciate your love of guns...

      December 18, 2012 at 7:43 pm | Report abuse |
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