The news was heartbreaking. Nearly unbearable. A gunman had walked into Sandy Hook Elementary School on Dec. 14, 2012, and killed 20 children and six staffers. When the shock and terror wore off, grief and anguish sank in. As the residents of Newtown, Conn., mourned the bright smiles and the lost futures, a nation grieved, too.
Obama has reached the end of his consequential eight-year presidency.
As the nation’s first African-American commander in chief and his wife
prepare to leave the White House behind, Yahoo News takes you through
his two terms — the exultation over the raid that killed Osama bin
Laden, the heartbreak of the massacre of children in Newtown, Conn., the
tumultuous implementation of the Affordable Care Act, the controversial
Iran nuclear deal, the outreach to Cuba, and many other signal moments
are also many quiet, behind-the-scenes snapshots, family time with
first lady Michelle Obama and daughters Sasha and Malia, and the
unforgettable photo of the little boy who asked to touch the president’s
hair. Through triumph and tragedy, these are some of the moments that
exemplified the Obama era. (Olivier Knox/Yahoo News)
(Photos: Pete Souza/The White House, Larry Downing/Reuters, Pete Souza/The White House, John Gress/Reuters)
The 50 fatalities at Pulse are considerably more than the 33 victims killed during the Virginia Tech massacre in 2007, or the 28 fatalities in the Newtown, Conn., school shooting in 2012. The 53 people wounded are also more than the number wounded in any other shooting, with the exception of the Aurora theater shooting in 2012, in which 58 were injured.
In the wake of the Orlando shooting — the deadliest in recent U.S. history, with 49 victims — calls for gun control have once again grown louder. In fact, they were shouted on the House floor on Monday. After Speaker Paul Ryan led a moment of silence, Democrats yelled, “Where’s the bill?” at him, asking for new gun-control measures.
This isn’t new. The word “doomed” has become a commonadjectiveto describegun-controlefforts. Mass shootings like those in San Bernardino, Calif., Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., and Fort Hood looked like they might fuel efforts to tighten laws, but gun-control advocates have found their efforts perpetually frustrated.
Efforts to pass federal gun control measures often get a lot of press, but state and local laws also play a big part in determining how people can purchase and own guns. After the Colorado Planned Parenthood shooting last year, President Obama asked Congress, as well as state and local governments, to take action.
The strictness of gun laws varies widely from state to state. We’ve put together state-by-state maps on some of the most important gun laws. Check out what nine types of gun-safety measures look like in your state, via datafromtheLawCenter to PreventGunViolence.
50 killed in Florida nightclub - shooter pledged ISIS allegiance
Here’s a timeline of the attack:
Before 2 a.m. Omar Mateen, a resident of Port St. Lucie, a city about 120 miles from Orlando, parked his van outside Pulse, a gay nightclub.
2:02 a.m. He entered the club armed with an AR-15-type assault rifle, a handgun and many rounds of ammunition, and opened fire.
An armed off-duty officer working security at the club confronted Mr. Mateen and engaged in a gun battle.
The gunman was outside the club at some point after the initial shots were fired then returned inside, and this did turn into a hostage situation.
Police then marshaled forces, bringing in a SWAT team and an armored vehicle. At some point, there was contact with the gunman inside.
It is unknown, he said, whether the gunman was killing others inside the club as the authorities prepared cautiously for a confrontation.
3 a.m. The club posted a warning on Facebook.
At some point, police heard from inside the building that at least 15 people were hiding in a restroom.
5 a.m. Police began an attempt to rescue the hostages. They detonated two explosives to distract the gunman. Nine officers entered the club, and shots were again exchanged. Mr. Mateen was killed. One officer was shot in the head, but his Kevlar helmet saved him from serious injury.
The rifle is the same type of gun used in the mass shootings in Aurora, Colo.; Newtown, Conn.; and San Bernardino, Calif.
The rifle is legal to buy in most states, including Florida. In 1994, Congress passed an assault weapons ban that prohibited manufacturing AR-15 for civilian sale with large-capacity magazines, bayonets or pistol grips. The ban limited, but did not end, sales of AR-15s. The weapons ban expired in 2004.
Supreme Court Turns Away Challenge to Connecticut Ban on Semiautomatic Weapons
“The Supreme Court on Monday refused to hear a Second Amendment challenge to a Connecticut law banning many semiautomatic rifles. The law, enacted in 2013 in the wake of the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., made it a crime to sell or possess the firearms, which critics call assault weapons. The decision … is part of a trend in which the justices have given at least tacit approval to broad gun-control laws in states and localities that choose to enact them.” - Adam Liptak of the New York Times
Today’s UCLA murder-suicide was the 186th U.S. school shooting since Sandy Hook in 2012
There have been 186 shootings on school campuses in the U.S. since Dec. 14, 2012, when 20 children and six adults were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., according to Everytown For Gun Safety, an advocacy group.
By that count, a gun has been fired on school grounds across America nearly once a week since the Sandy Hook shootings.
President Obama announced measures aimed at expanding the number of gun sales subject to background checks and providing more funding for mental health treatment. Obama wiped away tears as he talked about the Newtown, Conn., school shooting. “That was the worst day of my presidency, and it’s not something that I want to see repeated,” he said.
I went to Frank’s gun shop in Newtown, Conn. on a frigid Thursday night in mid-December, just before the one-year anniversary of the Sandy Hook massacre. Frank’s friend of 40 years, John, 69, was in the back of the shop smoking a cigarette. (Both men preferred to not give their last names.) Several of John’s kills — boar, ram, buffalo and deer — were displayed proudly across the wall. Frank, a Vietnam veteran and former detective, was polishing a beautiful rifle behind the counter before getting ready to close up the shop for the night.
Roughly a year earlier, Frank sold Nancy Lanza the Glock pistol that her son, Adam Lanza, used to commit suicide after his brutal rampage at Sandy Hook elementary school.
Frank fervently expressed that the events of that day were unimaginable tragedies. He also argued that limiting access to guns was not the answer. Many Americans must agree: In December, of the roughly 1,500 gun bills that were introduced, only 109 became law, and 70 of those laws actually loosened gun restrictions rather than tightened them.