Since the tragic deaths of 17 people at a school shooting in Parkland, Florida in mid-February, there has arguably been more movement toward gun control than the US has seen before. The relentless activism of the high-school student survivors of the attack has kept the topic urgent and focused.
Here’s what’s happened in the two weeks since Parkland:
- Dick’s Sporting Goods, Walmart, and Krogers have all announced they will not sell firearms to anyone under the age of 21. Dick’s also will join the other stores in discontinuing the sale of assault-style rifles.
- Several major corporations that previously offered discounts to NRA members have decided to cut ties. On February 20, Think Progress published a list of these corporations, including Delta Airlines, United Airlines, Hertz, and MetLife. In the days after the list went public, most of the companies announced they had rescinded the discounts.
- In Florida, state lawmakers unveiled a package of gun bills meant to stop another Parkland from happening. They have proposed a three-day waiting period on all firearms purchases, raising the age limit for gun sales to 21, and allowing law enforcement to temporarily confiscate weapons from anyone who is deemed a threat to themselves or to others. (In a nod to the NRA, which has long held power over the state, lawmakers are also proposed arming some teachers.)
- California lawmakers have proposed a whopping 10 new gun control bills. On the table now are efforts to expand the definition of assault rifles, expand gun violence restraining orders, and an initiative to crack down down on homemade “ghost guns.”
- After Trump expressed support for a wide range of gun control measures in a rambling and often inaccurate televised meeting on Wednesday, Congress is scrambling to figure out how to move forward on guns. Trump’s statements directly contradicted the Republican party line on gun control, and flew in the face of NRA orthodoxy. Talking to reporters after Trump’s meeting, Senator Chuck Schumer said “The president started on the right foot, but we must work together to get it done.”
- New gun control bills are also on the table in Illinois, Indiana, New Jersey, New York, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Vermont, Virginia, and Washington state.
So clearly, the momentum is with those siding with sanity. Can we keep it that way?