Obama: Newtown, You Are Not Alone
At memorial, he pledges to curb violence
By Rob Quinn, Newser Staff
Posted Dec 16, 2012 11:51 PM CST
President Obama pauses during a speech at an interfaith vigil for the victims of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting .   (AP Photo/ Evan Vucci)

(Newser) – At a nationally televised memorial service for the Newtown school shooting victims, President Obama told the town's shattered people that America shared their grief and vowed to do everything in his power to prevent further tragedies. "I can only hope it helps for you to know that you’re not alone in your grief; that our world, too, has been torn apart; that all across this land of ours, we have wept with you, we’ve pulled our children tight," he said. "And you must know that whatever measure of comfort we can provide, we will provide; whatever portion of sadness that we can share with you to ease this heavy load, we will gladly bear it. Newtown—you are not alone."

Obama lamented that America had failed "to keep our children, all of them" safe and, without specifically mentioning gun control, pledged a fresh effort to curb violence, the Washington Post reports. "We can't tolerate this anymore. These tragedies must end. And to end them we must change," he said. "In the coming weeks, I'll use whatever power this office holds to engage my fellow citizens from law enforcement to mental health professionals to parents and educators in an effort aimed at preventing more tragedies like this. Because what choice do we have? We can't accept events like this as routine." Before the evening service, Obama met with first responders and families who lost loved ones.

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Dec 17, 2012 11:20 AM CST
STOP THE MUDSLINGING! Many of you Newser commentators are being asinine in your statements. We have an obvious problem of gun violence in this country that needs rational pragmatic thought and actions, not irrational idealist or ideologue rantings! GROW UP ALL OF YOU!
Dec 17, 2012 9:57 AM CST
You have my full support on being our leader on this one, Mr. President! -- You are right, we can not do nothing... the death of those innocent little children is our wake up call -- You are right, though we cannot "eliminate evil from the world"... that is not "an excuse for inaction". A very easy, obvious, and pragmatic set of first steps: 1) Legal maximum capacites for firearm magazines (perhaps as little as 5?) 2) Legal definition of tactical vs non-tactical firearms 3) Illegalization of sale or ownership of operative tactical firearms A tougher, slippery-slope laden, but unfortunately socially-necessary set of individual liberty limitations: 1) Legal definition of psychological, mental, or physical conditions that require keeping guns from 2) Legal requirement (with legal liabilities) of health professionals in their formal diagnosis of the above 3) Legal notification to guardians and authorities of above diagnosis 4) Legal requirement that there is no firearm access at residence of those with above diagnosis Sorry NRA, 2nd-amendment purists, radical righties... the above is consistent with my views: -- future generations first (that is our #1 responsibility) -- pro-life (from conception to natural death) -- social moderate (the good of the many cannot be ignored) -- pragmatic realist (echoing President Obama: "Surely, we can do better than this") -- self-responsibility (seriously think about this those of you sharing homes with people with diagnosed conditions) -- patriotic citizen (being a hunter/sportsman and/or rationally/responsibly armed are good long-term things)
Dec 17, 2012 9:33 AM CST
ANOTHER great Obama political speech where he acts like he really cares about the deaths of 20 children an 6 adult women, who were shot by a mentally challenged person. -- WHAT? -- NOT once in Obama's Presidency has he ever expressed sympathy for the thousands of innocent men, women, and children, that were killed by his drones, missiles and bombs. --- NOT ONCE --- Those innocent women and children Obama killed with his drones, missiles and bombs, weren't Americans, and Obama will never have to answer for killing them, nor will he ever say he feels sorry for killing them. -- The hypocritical mass murderer Obama, who uses drones, missiles and bombs, instead of bullets to kill all those foreign innocents.--------- REALLY