Bonamici pushes awareness of gun violence prevention
"When something like that happens, it's chaos in the first place," Scappoose Police Chief Norm Miller told city councilors Tuesday evening, Feb. 19, during a review of how his department has worked with schools to develop a safety plan in the event of an active shooter situation.
Earlier this month, Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici invited a gun violence prevention advocate to accompany her to the 2019 State of the Union address.
The two exercises were unrelated, yet intrinsically connected.
Bonamici, a Democrat whose congressional district includes Columbia County, invited Alexandria Goddard, a Portland State University student and 2018 Portland March for our Lives organizer, to join her in Washington, D.C., on Feb. 4 as President Donald Trump delivered the State of the Union address. The congresswoman first met Goddard when she was a student at Beaverton's Sunset High School. Now in college, Goddard continues her advocacy work through an organization she started called The Agora Theory. The group aims to get young and underrepresented groups engaged in politics.
So far, nearly 1,000 students in the Beaverton School District have been registered to vote over the past two years, thanks to The Agora Theory's "Back to School, Back to the Ballot" initiative.
Bonamici has also called for action to prevent gun violence and is currently pushing for legislation to require universal background checks before all gun sales.
The congresswoman is a co-sponsor of House Bill 8, an effort to require all states to comply with background checks before the transfer or sale of a firearm. Background checks are already required in states like Oregon and California, in an effort to prevent the sale of a gun to anyone who is
legally barred from possessing a firearm.
Bonamici said having universal background checks would "help stop criminals from getting weapons they are not legally allowed to purchase."
She recently released her stance on reducing gun violence in the U.S., saying she supports the 2nd amendment, but also supports limits on the sizes of gun magazines to those that hold no more than 10 rounds, and a ban on military-style assault rifles.
"The movement to end gun violence is being led by students like Alexandria and the many families hurt by this epidemic," Bonamici stated in an email advocating for Congress to enact universal background checks prior to all gun sales.
"Thoughts and prayers are not enough; Congress must take action to address gun violence," she stated in a news release shortly after the Feb. 4 State of the Union address.
Goddard said she was "honored and excited" to partner with Bonamici in the charge to end gun violence and get young people involved.
"Young people have fresh perspectives and passion beyond measure, but above all else, they make up a massive portion of this country," Goddard stated in a news release from Bonamici's office. "Our votes need to be counted and our voices need to be heard. Even young adults who cannot yet vote need to get involved." `