Curbing gun violence ‘builds a culture of life,’ bishop tells senators

2
1764
Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton, Calif., chairman of the U.S. bishops' Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, addresses the bishops at their annual mid-year meeting June 13, 2012 in Atlanta. (CNS photo/Michael Alexander, Georgia Bulletin)
Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton, Calif., chairman of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, addresses the bishops at their annual mid-year meeting June 13, 2012 in Atlanta. (CNS photo/Michael Alexander, Georgia Bulletin)

WASHINGTON (CNS) — Days before the Senate began debate over gun-control legislation, Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton, Calif., urged senators to support a bill that “builds a culture of life by promoting policies that reduce gun violence and saves people’s lives in homes and communities.”

Bishop Blaire, head of the U.S. bishops’ Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, said in an April 8 letter to Senate members that one bill, S. 649, was “a positive step in the right direction.”

The bill requires universal background checks for all gun buys and makes gun trafficking a federal crime.

On April 10, the day before debate began, Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., and Sen. Patrick Toomey, R-Pa., announced a compromise deal on the background-checks provision of the bill that they believe will win bipartisan support.

The background checks would not apply to unadvertised gun sales, according to the compromise. Further, gun owners who have passed background checks within the past five years for a concealed-carry permit can use that permit to buy guns in other states. The compromise would relax some restrictions on hunters traveling with their guns through states that ban them. It also would allow active members of the military to buy firearms in their home states; the practice is illegal when they are stationed outside their state.

Bishop Blaire asked senators to consider amendments to the bill that would ban assault weapons and limit civilian access to high-capacity ammunition magazines.

He also asked them to reject expanding the use of mandatory-minimum sentences for gun-violation convictions. “One-size-fits-all policies are counterproductive, inadequate and replace judges’ assessments with rigid formulations,” Bishop Blaire said, adding the “pervasive” use of mandatory minimum sentences accounts for rising incarceration rates.

“Sadly, gun violence is too common a reality,” Bishop Blaire added. “Tragic events, such as the recent event in Newtown, Conn., and the violence that occurs daily in our homes and communities, should lead us to answer the call of Pope Francis to ‘change hatred into love, vengeance into forgiveness, war into peace.'”

2 COMMENTS

  1. I don’t know Bishop Stephen E. Blaire of Stockton, Calif but he’s WAY OUT of his element. He “Urged senators to support a bill that “builds a culture of life”. First of all, that’s his job. Has he wondered why so few come to Mass? Why would a bishop ask for a “Ban on assault weapons and limit civilian access to high-capacity ammunition magazines” when Catholics are aborting at the same rate as pagan/non-Catholics? When ‘Catholic Hispanics’ are having out of wedlock births at 60%? Does this Apostle of Christ know that using FBI murder statistics, more murders are committed with hammers and blunt objects than with rifles? God help us!

  2. Boy, this one sure has me scratching my head in wonder and disbelief. Why hasn’t the good Bishop, as the USCCB head of the Committee on Domestic Justice and Human Development, ever been lobbying these pro-death senators to abandon their love of abortion (1.5 million American babies each year) and euthanasia (numbers unknown ‘cause they are not required to be reported, but we know Gosnell’s numbers are up into the thousands) instead of trying to disarm law-abiding citizens who will be the last line of defense against an evil & tyrannical government that is bent on destroying the Catholic Church, which seems to claim the Good bishop as one of their own?? I don’t get it! How about lobbying for allowing some human babies to develop a little past nine months?? How many so-called Catholic politicians who promote abortion and euthanasia and anti-Catholic laws has the good Bishop excommunicated, or ever refuse a Eucharistic host???

    Too bad the good Bishop’s staff didn’t explain to him that “gun trafficking” is already a federal crime. Notice however that none of the Obama gun runners (Fast & Furious) have ever been charged with anything. They didn’t even get fired or demoted.

    Too bad the good Bishop’s staff didn’t explain to him that “universal background checks” has nothing to do with background checks and everything to do with universal gun owner registration. With every new background check (if this nightmare were to pass) Obama would identify and locate TWO gun owners. That makes it a lot easier when he decides to come knocking on doors.

    Too bad the good Bishop’s staff didn’t explain to him that law abiding American gun owners will be the ones defending him when the Obama Culture Czar sends his brown-shirts to get the good Bishop and deliver him to the Re-education Camp so as to save him from Catholicism.

    Too bad no one has explained these things to Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA).

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.