First and foremost I want to send my condolences to the families and friends of the vicious attack at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando. It was a horrendous act of violence that should not be condoned or allowed in this country.
While it appears that the perpetrator of this act was an ISIS sympathizer, let us not jump to conclusions until more is known. What we do know is that Omar Mateen was a disturbed individual. He was born in NYC to parents from Afghanistan. He was not an immigrant. He had a distinct hatred for gays and was abusive to his wife prior to their divorce. He had made terrorist statements to co-workers and was investigated by the FBI, which found no connections to other terrorist organizations. That he was a sympathizer is not debated. That he was a soldier carrying out a terrorist attack is still not clear. It is unlike the Paris attacks which were coordinated terrorism.
What is most disturbing is his ability to procure the assault weapon that caused so much death and destruction in this incident. According to sources, it was legally purchased within the last few days. He walked into a store or gun supplier and bought a weapon that no person, outside the military, should have a reason to possess. Its only purpose is to hurt and kill. What other use could it have?
Bernie Sanders has called for a ban on assault weapons and it is time that our government takes the first step to keep these weapons off the market along with the clips and ammunition that feeds their disastrous consequences. What is stopping us? Why the inaction? Why the political rhetoric?
I stand with the People of Orlando, the People of Florida, the People of the United States and the World that this violence must end and end now. Our voices need to be heard. This cannot happen again!