President Obama condemned the shooting deaths at a Colorado Planned Parenthood office Saturday, saying America cannot allow such gun violence to become “normal.”
“Enough is enough,” Mr. Obama said in a statement. “This is not normal. We can’t let it become normal.”
The president said if Americans “truly care” about preventing violence, “then we have to do something about the easy accessibility of weapons of war on our streets to people who have no business wielding them.”
“The last thing Americans should have to do, over the holidays or any day, is comfort the families of people killed by gun violence — people who woke up in the morning and bid their loved ones goodbye with no idea it would be for the last time,” the president said. “And yet, two days after Thanksgiving, that’s what we are forced to do again.”
Police in Colorado Springs have arrested Robert Lewis Dear, a 57-year-old suspect who is accused of fatally shooting a police officer and two civilians at the Planned Parenthood office Friday. Authorities haven’t said what led to the shootings, in which nine others were wounded.
“We don’t yet know what this particular gunman’s so-called motive was for shooting 12 people, or for terrorizing an entire community, when he opened fire with an assault weapon and took hostages at a Planned Parenthood center in Colorado,” Mr. Obama said. “What we do know is that he killed a cop in the line of duty, along with two of the citizens that police officer was trying to protect. We know that law enforcement saved lives, as so many of them do every day, all across America. And we know that more Americans and their families had fear forced upon them.”
Mr. Obama added, “May God bless Officer Garrett Swasey and the Americans he tried to save — and may He grant the rest of us the courage to do the same thing.”