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In the wake of mass murders by gunmen in Buffalo and Uvalde, Americans once again find themselves in all too familiar territory: grieving for the loss of life on the one hand and grappling with the issue of preventing future gun violence on the other.
Many believe the problem is the number of guns and easy access to guns. Others argue that mass murders are a mental health problem. But in my time as a prosecutor and U.S. Senator, and frankly as a gun owner, I found that there seems to be one immediate plan of action that everyone agrees should be taken: vigorously enforce the federal firearms laws that are currently on the books. It’s not panacea – only a start.
WASHINGTON, DC – APRIL 11: U.S. President Joe Biden’s nominee to lead the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Steve Dettelbach speaks during an event about gun violence in the Rose Garden of the White House April 11, 2022 in Washington, D.C. Biden announced Dettelbach as his nominee to lead the ATF.
The problem, however, is that we can’t effectively do that when the agency that has been tasked with enforcing