Last Friday morning, the news of the massacre in Newtown began to filter through about an unknown gunman who went on a killing spree in Sandy Hook elementary school.
One week on we still know little about the motive which drove Adam Lanza (20) to kill his own mother before murdering 26 others, 20 of whom were children under the age of 7.
The tragic events in Connecticut have once again reignited the gun control debate in the U.S. Here is a snap shot of some reactions from those in public office, as well as some famous quotes about gun control in America.
1. President Barack Obama on his commitment to gun control.
"I will use all the powers of this office to help advance efforts aimed at preventing more tragedies like this."
2. Academy award winner Michael Moore responding to the Newton massacre.
“I'm convinced the majority of Americans will now back strong gun control laws. And a better mental health care system. And perhaps a few are willing to look at the deeper issue of how this country officially sanctions violence as a means to an end.”
“The NRA, for the first time ever, has gone silent. They've taken their Facebook page down. They know they can't show up in Newtown next week and stick it to the people there, like they usually do after one of these mass killings. Let's face it, the gun lobby tonight is on the ropes. Now is the time to act. We can't let this sad moment pass without a true response and a president willing to be a strong leader.”
3. Republican Louie Gohmert, R-Texas, a gun rights advocate, told "Fox News Sunday:"
“I wish to God she [principal of Sandy Hook Elementary Schoo] had had an M-4 in her office, locked up so when she heard gunfire, she pulls it out and she didn't have to lunge heroically with nothing in her hands," he said.
4. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg
"Words alone cannot heal our nation. Only action can do that. Gun violence is a national epidemic," Bloomberg said. "I demand a plan. The time for talk is over."
5. Charles Heston speaking to Fox News Channel, September 15, 1997
"... There's no such thing as a good gun. There's no such thing as a bad gun. A gun in the hands of a bad man is a very dangerous thing. A gun in the hands of a good person is no danger to anyone except the bad guys. ..."
6. Clint Eastwood speaking with Psychology Today, Jan. 1, 1993
“You know I've had people come up and ask me to sign their guns. Sign my name on gun handles and holsters and stuff. I've done it once or twice for law enforcement officials, but when people do that -- and there have been quite a few of them lately -- I always tell them no. I don't want to do that. I don't want my name on that and I hope you use this gun, whatever its purpose is, I hope it's used wisely.”
7. President Ronald Regan, Mar. 22, 1986
“As long as there are guns, the individual that wants a gun for a crime is going to have one and going to get it. The only person who’s going to be penalized and have difficulty is the law-abiding citizen, who then cannot have [it] if he wants protection -- the protection of a weapon in his home.”
8. Dalai Lama
"But if someone has a gun and is trying to kill you ... it would be reasonable to shoot back with your own gun."
9. George Orwell
"That rifle on the wall of the labourer's cottage or working class flat is the symbol of democracy. It is our job to see that it stays there."
10. George Washington
"A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined, but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government."