The shooting at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando was a terrible tragedy that took the lives of 49 innocent people, while another 53 victims were wounded. This brutal act was committed by a lone gunman named Omar Marteen. The incident has caused the exploration of current gun laws in the US. Because of the nightclub shooting and other tragedies in Orlando that occurred around the same time, some people asked how much more the City of Orlando could take. A number of individuals were moved to pray by #PrayForOrlando. There is much debate about whether or not better gun control laws would prevent this type of tragedy.
Days prior to the shooting, Mateen purchased the Sig Sauer .223 semi-automatic rifle and Glock 17 from a Florida gun store. The purchases were legally made on separate occasions. Assault weapons are often criticized for the ability they give shooters to shoot faster and produce higher death tolls. A federal ban against assault weapons expired in 2004. Sales for these weapons increase whenever there is a new legislative push to restrict them from being sold. According to Derek Byrd, a Sarasota, Florida based lawyer, there is no law that would have prevented the Orlando shooter.
The Orlando shooting sparked new gun control language debates prompting Senator Bernie Sanders, Hillary Clinton and other Democrats to speak out. Hillary Clinton has historically been outspoken against the National Rifle Association (NRA). Connecticut Senator Chris Murphy blamed Congress for the mass shootings, because of its failure to enact stricter gun control measures.
Sanders said, “We should not be selling automatic weapons which are designed to kill people. We have got to do everything that we can on top of that to make sure that guns do not fall into the hands of people who should not have them, criminals, people who are mentally ill. So that struggles continues.” Former US Senate candidate, Patrick Murphy, joined Christine Leinonen, who is the mother of one of the victims, in giving a speech before the Democratic National Convention about “common sense” gun measures.