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WASHINGTON, DC – The following statement is from John DeStefano, former President of The National League of Cities, Mayor, New Haven, CT, released the following statement in response to today's National Rifle Association (NRA) press conference:
"Today at 9:30 am all across Connecticut a moment of silence was held for the Newtown tragedy as a way to move forward. Unfortunately the National Rifle Association shortly thereafter held a press conference and used it as a time to look backward. Rather than contributing to the national conversation on the easy availability of high-powered weapons, the NRA ignored the overarching issue of gun violence in our communities and instead blamed everyone else – the media, the schools and now are following a line of logic that would have us arm our teachers.
"The NRA's statements were tone deaf to the national mood and ignore the reality that this is not just a school shooting issue. Every day in cities across this nation, residents wake up to media accounts of shootings, robberies and other issues involving guns. The nation has seen shootings in movie theaters and even on an Army base.
"Our nation needs serious answers and today's press conference had a very clear message – that the NRA doesn't want to be part of a meaningful solution. The NLC looks forward to engaging on the issue and working to ensure a comprehensive effort to reduce violent acts. "
The National League of Cities is dedicated to helping city leaders build better communities. NLC is a resource and advocate for 19,000 cities, towns and villages, representing more than 218 million Americans.