Democratic Representative Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez questions why Lauren Boebert is even in Congress after the Republican representative suggested mass shootings can’t be solved by legislation.
The New York progressive angered Boebert Wednesday, a day after an 18-year-old gunman fatally shot 19 students and two teachers at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas. The exchanges between the two representatives, who sit at opposite ends of the political spectrum, reflect a broader debate about how the federal government should respond to mass shootings.
The gunman who was killed by law enforcement bought two military-style rifles after turning 18, the legal age to purchase long guns in Texas.
In the wake of the school shooting, the worst since the Sandy Hook massacre in 2012, congressional Democrats have revived their push for HR 1446, which closes loopholes on background checking for personal and online sales while allowing more time for the scrutiny of should grant gun purchases.
The bill, currently before the Senate, passed the House of Representatives last year by a vote of 219 to 210. Ocasio-Cortez voted in favour. Boebert voted against.
“You can’t legislate to oust evil,” tweeted Boebert, whose district includes much of rural western Colorado.
“Why even be in Congress if you don’t believe in doing your job?” replied Ocasio-Cortez. “Just quit and let someone who really doesn’t care do it instead of acting like a useless piece of furniture when babies are being shot with AR15 bombs that we teens impulsively have bought before they can legally have a beer. “
Similar debates have played out elsewhere. After the shooting, President Joe Biden expressed disbelief at how easily the Texas gunman was able to acquire guns.
“The idea that an 18-year-old boy can walk into a gun store and buy two assault weapons — that’s just wrong,” Biden said in a speech.
Utah Senator Mike Lee on Wednesday questioned the effectiveness of tougher gun laws, suggesting fatherlessness and social isolation led to shootings.
Other Republicans have called for more security in schools to deter shooters. But studies have cast doubt on the idea.
A 2021 study in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that “the data do not suggest an association between having an armed officer and deterring violence” in schools. Instead, the study found that the death rate was higher in schools with armed guards. The study also indicated that armed guards are not a deterrent, as many school gunners have suicidal thoughts.
“The majority of shooters targeting schools are students at the school, calling into question the effectiveness of hardened safety and active target practice. Instead, schools need to invest in resources to prevent shootings before they happen.
Another 2020 Rand Corporation study found that “Faiths on school grounds account for a small fraction of all violent deaths among youth ages 5 to 18,” making it difficult to study the effectiveness of armed guards.
Boebert reiterated the idea of armed officers in schools in another targeted tweet on Wednesday Ocasio-Cortez said, “Our schools can have certified armed teachers to protect our children from deranged lunatics who want to harm them.”
“Ms. Defund the Police,” Boebert wrote in another tweet to Ocasio-Cortez, mocking a slogan used by progressives to redistribute law enforcement funding. “Gun-free zones have proven deadly. Let me know when you are ready to do your job and effectively protect our schools with armed security forces. Let’s meet and solve the problem.”
news week has reached out to Ocasio-Cortez and Boebert for comment.
https://www.newsweek.com/alexandria-ocasio-cortez-calls-lauren-boebert-useless-piece-furniture-1710249 Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez calls Lauren Boebert ‘useless piece of furniture’