By Pratheeksha Gopinath
Tension soars in Washington as students stage protest in front of the White House in the aftermath of the Florida shooting. Going down as a gloomy day in the history of America, 17 people fell victims to the shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Parkland, Florida. Nikolas Cruz, 19, the alleged suspect, opened fire at the school on 14th February, Valentine’s Day. Infusing terror amongst people, the shooting brought back the dreadful memories of 2017’s Las Vegas shooting. Thousands of protestors comprising teachers and students gathered in front of the White House to voice their dissent.
Trigger for the offset of the Bill
Reprimanding Trump for his past actions in favour of the National Rifle Association (NRA), the protestors urged the Republican-led Congress to immediately act in the wake of the tragedy. Criticised for his continually changing stances on the issue, Donald Trump was condemned for his inefficacy. Having been a staunch supporter of a ban on the purchase of arms, Trump unabashedly switched sides during the 2016 presidential campaign. NRA, being his most faithful support system during the election campaign, earned the favour of Trump after his officiation. It was indeed obnoxious to note that Nikolas Cruz, the suspect in the shooting had a legal possession of the AR-15 assault-style rifle. People were petrified to discover that Cruz held at least ten guns and the variant of an AK-47 in his possession. It was indeed a major short-coming on part of the government as well as the NRA. The facilitation of the legal purchase of arms by a person recognized as a potential threat to society was the cause of the uproar.
Generating angst amongst the citizens, the appalling shootout threw light upon the indispensable need for a stringent gun law. Facing the ire of the protestors, Trump on Monday, 19th February 2018 promulgated the effective implementation of the Criminal Background Check Bill. Castigated for his lukewarm response to the massacre, Trump embarked upon amending the current Gun Laws in America. Indulging in talks with Republican Senator John Cornyn and the Democratic Senator Chris Murphy, Trump promised upon improving the Federal Background Check System. In a rare show of bipartisan support, the Cornyn-Murphy bill was announced last November with the intention of improving Federal Compliance.
Actions taken by the legislation
Intending to hinder the purchase of arms, the legislation focused upon the efficacious reporting of crimes by the federal and state governments. The legislation, passed in the aftermath of the mass shooting in Sutherland Springs, Texas (Cornyn’s home state), sought to facilitate the accurate reporting of crime-related information, including the criminal history of the citizens by the Federal and state authorities. The bill focused on the effective reporting of vital crime-related information to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (Nics).
The details of the agreement drawn were not revealed, giving way to obscurity. Michael Hammond of the lobby group Gun Owners of America hailed the FixNics Act as `a major mistake’. Taking into account the fact that Trump was still working on revising the Bill, Hammond suggested the half-heartedness of the government. The promulgation was announced, very much to the disappointment of NRA who is hoping to negotiate terms with the White House. Trump is currently walking on eggshells as this legislation could go either way. Hopefully, he will serve the interests of the people.
Featured Image Source: Visual Hunt
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