Union County Mayors Implore State Colleagues to Combat Illegal Gun Trafficking
Fanwood and Roselle mayors hope to prevent shootings by increasing regulation of mail order and online purchases of ammunition.
In light of the shooting spree at a movie theater in Aurora, Colo., on July 20, two Union County Mayors have spoken out in support of a congressional proposal to increase regulation of mail order and online purchases of ammunition.
The shooting suspect, James Holmes, 24, is accused of killing 12 people and injuring 58 after purchasing more than 6,000 rounds of ammunition online.
Fanwood Mayor Colleen Mahr and Roselle Mayor Jamel Holley said yesterday they support Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) and Rep. Carolyn McCarthy’s (D-NY) push for tighter regulations involving such purchases.
“Enough is enough,” Holley said. “Citizens are outraged. They’ve waited long enough; now is the time for action.”
The mayors said the proposal is aimed at combating those who anonymously stockpile weapons for mass murder, and they hope such regulations would prevent future occurrences similar to the shooting in Aurora.
Additionally, Mahr and Holley currently back a coalition that brings together elected town leaders nationwide to identify strategies aimed at stopping the flow of illegal guns into American communities.
Mayors Against Illegal Guns, founded in 2006 by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, is a national bi-partisan coalition.
However, out of 566 municipalities in New Jersey, only 67 mayors have signed on to the coalition.
While the coalition currently boasts support from less than 9 percent of New Jersey mayors, Mahr and Holley are currently urging their counterparts in Union County and throughout the state to join the coalition.
“We strongly encourage our colleagues throughout the state to consider joining this very important coalition,” Mahr said. “This isn’t a Democrat v. Republican issue; it’s about people in leadership positions devising the strategies we need to keep all of our families safe.”
“We’re not calling for a complete overhaul of the Second Amendment,” Holley added. “But our leaders must come to the table with viable solutions to prevent terrible situations like this from occurring again.”
The Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition recently teamed with the Tucson shooting survivors and the families of victims to launch a national campaign demanding specific plans to reduce gun violence from President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney.
“Thirty-four Americans succumb to gun violence on a daily basis,” Holley noted. “If more people put politics aside and came together to offer viable strategies, we can save a significant number of lives.”
“This is about advocating for common sense policies,” Mahr added. “We need to get the guns off the streets any way we can. We need our fellow mayors in New Jersey to join us in a bi-partisan manner before the next tragedy strikes.