Jul 5, 2022 - Politics & Policy

Highland Park mayor: "Nation needs to have a true conversation" about guns

Nancy Rotering, the mayor of Highland Park, Illinois, spoke about the need for legislation to stem gun violence, telling CNN on Tuesday that current laws "are not protecting the people they were intended to protect."

Driving the news: At least six people were killed and two dozen others were injured in a mass shooting at the city's Fourth of July parade on Monday.

The big picture: Asked if Highland Park's ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines could be effective without national legislation, Rotering told CNN the local bans were a reflection of the community's values.

  • However, Rotering added that "obviously we have a problem in this country."
  • "If we have weekly mass shootings involving these weapons of war, and it's important for us to talk about how to provide that protection on a broader scale," she added.
  • "Whether it is statewide, whether it's nationally, I think there is a real obvious need that these events and the frequency of their occurrence — using legally acquired weapons would indicate that these laws are not protecting the people they were intended to protect."

What they're saying: "My community came together yesterday to celebrate freedom. There is no freedom if you're fearing a mass shooting on a weekly basis," Rotering said.

  • "I think our nation needs to have a true conversation with itself, because we know that there is not enough police force, there are not enough police, there are not enough weapons in this world, if you've got people who are going to outgun the police with these weapons of war."

Worth noting: In another interview with CNN, Rotering said that she knew the suspected shooter as a child, when he was a Cub Scout in her Cub Scout pack.

  • "It absolutely breaks my heart. I see this picture and through the tattoos, I see the little boy," she said.

Go deeper: Remembering the victims of the Highland Park July 4 shooting

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