WASHINGTON (Fwrd Axis) — Fresh off his first trip to Asia since taking office, an emotional President Joe Biden addressed a nation reeling from Tuesday’s mass shooting that left at least 18 children dead at a Texas elementary school.
Fresh off Air Force One, Biden spoke from the White House’s Roosevelt Room less than an hour after arriving back on U.S. soil and ordering the flag flying above the White House and throughout federal buildings in the country to be lowered to half-staff.
“I’d hoped, when I became president, I would not have to do this again. Another massacre. Uvalde, Texas. An elementary school. Beautiful, second, third, fourth graders,” he said as he began his remarks.
Prior to the President’s remarks, Texas officials upped the death toll from 14 children killed to 18.
Police identified the shooter as 18-year-old Salvador Ramos. He had a handgun and also a rifle in his possession. Uvalde Memorial Hospital said 15 students were being treated and two others were transferred to San Antonio for treatment.
University Health Hospital in San Antonio said two victims — a 66-year-old woman and a 10-year-old girl were shot and in critical condition, the hospital confirmed to FWRD AXIS News. The Children’s Hospital of San Antonio said it has also received patients from the horrific shooting in Uvalde.
“As a nation, we have to ask when in God’s name are we going to stand up to the gun lobby,” Biden said as he raised his voice. “I am sick and tired of it — we have to act.”
Biden was briefed on the shooting aboard Air Force One and during his remarks, he made a point to mention while he was overseas, he realized you do not hear of mass shootings happening often as they do in America.
“These kinds of mass shootings rarely happen anywhere else in the world. They have mental health problems and domestic disputes in other countries. They have people who are lost,” he said.
The news comes exactly one week after Biden addressed another mass shooting when he traveled to New York to meet with the families of 10 people who were killed at a grocery store in Buffalo.
Republicans on Capitol Hill quickly shot down any attempts to pass gun reform legislation, saying they do not work.
“That doesn’t work. It’s not effective. It doesn’t prevent crime,” said Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) in response to a question from reporters. “We should go after felons and fugitives and those with serious mental illness, arresting them, prosecuting them when they try to illegally buy firearms.”
Vice President Kamala Harris was visibly angry and heartbroken when speaking at an event for Asian Pacific American Institute for Congressional Studies in Washington earlier Tuesday.
“Enough is enough. As a nation, we have to have the courage to take action and understand the nexus between what makes for reasonable and sensible public policy to ensure something like this never happens again,” Harris said.