In the aftermath of the most recent gun violence tragedy, that took place on Friday night at University of California, Santa Barbara, the Rabbinical Assembly issued the following statement:
Rabbi Bill Gershon, President stated:
As we mourn the deaths of six young adults and pray for the recovery of 13 other victims, we call upon gun advocates to look upon the scourge and the sorrow of a nation awash in lethal weapons. In our sorrow and our outrage we hold up the words of Richard Martinez, father of victim Chris Martinez whose plaintive query haunts us: “When will this insanity stop?”
Rabbi Julie Schonfeld, Executive Vice President, added:
It is no longer possible for the gun lobby to merely point to the individual shooters and distance themselves from the moral responsibility of a pandemic of gun violence. The suffering of individuals with personal demons is repeatedly escalated to a national tragedy due to the ready availability of lethal weapons. The Bible enjoins us not to “place stumbling blocks before the blind” and yet this injunction is abrogated every day as our country is so inundated with weapons meant for war and violence that our nation no longer enjoys a day of peace. The Rabbinical Assembly stands with people of faith and conscience and demands that attention be paid to the rights of Americans to walk the street without the fear that a nation awash in guns might turn any troubled individual into a domestic terrorist whom our nation has set loose upon itself.