Transcript for Sandy Hook Families Reflect on Loss
This is a special. Report from the EC. For New York with this ABC news digital special report. As they grieve for the young they lost one year ago the world is looking to Newtown Connecticut. Asking how and if the healing has begun. Many of the 26 families who lost a loved one -- that's and you massacre are reflecting on this first anniversary. The relatives of the children and the six teachers are unveiling a web -- my sandy hook family dot Oracle to remember. Those 26 victims and to reach out to families. Also today including in the remarks some of those family members let's listen it. All -- changed our lives. Since that day we have been overwhelmed by the outpouring of kindness. Love. Prayers. Generosity. For received from the entire world. To simply say thank you it's not enough to express our sincere gratitude. In the midst of -- grace we have come to realize that we want our loved ones to be remembered for the lives they lived. And how they touched our hearts. We have been uplifted by the support. So many people. And we would like to keep that spirit of unity and love alive and all we do. To remember those we so dearly miss. It is with this in mind. That we have created the my sandy hook family dot org web site. This web site is intended to serve as a singular place -- sharing. Communication. And contacts. With the families of those who lost their lives that day. My -- -- family dot org allows us the opportunity. To honor those taken from us so -- -- -- -- -- -- We ask that you understand. That each of us each family. Is unique in our own experiences. Following this tragedy. And we each have our own voice and perspective. By creating this web site. We hope to offer an opportunity. To communicate. With their families and -- the ones that we love. About the same time respecting. -- families individual journey and unique experience us. On the one -- mark. -- this terrific day. We know that many people across the country will be thinking of her children and educators. So tragically taken from us. I'm wondering how to help. We ask that you consider. Performing an act of kindness. Or volunteering with the charitable organization. In your own local community. We help that some small measure. Of good -- may be returned to the world. This concludes our family statement. -- like to adding that our family. We'll be lighting a candle. On the eve -- 1214. The last night we spent. With our speech Charlotte. And we'll be letting a candle. For a beautiful little girl Jessica. We will be lighting a candle on behalf of Jesse -- Lewis. We're gonna lighted candles. In honor of our daughter Emily. We'll let it can -- from him I'm John -- friends. We'll let it can -- -- mailed -- sister Victoria. We'll be letting a candle for my sweet -- Jack. We will be lighting a candle in honor of our beautiful girl grace. We will be lighting a candle for -- Gorgeous daughter body else. -- -- lighting a candle for a beautiful daughter. But most other and they don't have -- down -- and. He will be -- Kendall first sweet son Daniel. Movies -- -- candle for my two ordered Lauren. Who -- a candidate for -- We will be lighting a candle for our irrepressible -- That concludes -- formal statement thank you. And as the inclusion of the remarks by some of the families. Affected by that tragedy one year ago families now celebrating the lives of those -- they lost that day the massacre at sandy hook. Obviously making a national impact and now web -- has spent and failed by those families to connect those that were affected. The web site mine's sandy hook family. And of course it was something that the entire nation had paused and recognized. And obviously in the reaction to that. There was legislation that had been proposed. Regarding gun control and the debate then ensued. And now one year later gun control advocates are making a strong case against automatic weapons increased background checks but. Nearly all efforts have stalled. For more on where we stand right now bring in our political director from Washington DC Rick Klein. Rick thank you for being with us obviously it is impossible to think that it's been one year since that day and there has been a lot of legislation there has been a lot of push for additional gun control. Where we at right now. They came close but they didn't get there there was an effort about six months ago now to -- to tighten up background checks -- near universal background checks on gun. On gun purchases any -- excruciatingly close in the United States senate but it fell short. And since then we have heard barely a whisper of of new efforts to control guns we've seen. I'm not just -- -- families but also Gabby Giffords husband and Gabby Giffords herself. In addition to victims of of gun violence in Colorado for instance have Mayor Bloomberg with his national -- mayor. The mayors against illegal guns all that involves -- in a major lobbying effort. Over the course the last twelve months but I had city not just about nothing to show for it is a deep disappointment to them to the disappointment of President Obama. Into his allies that they haven't been able to get anything significant across the finish line. -- -- Act as the face of those that were lost that day in sandy hook and the president had -- a personal appeal as you. Had mentioned getting Giffords as well. From what we've learned though about the shooter Adam Lanza and his mother did that. Legislation that was put up for proposal would that have addressed though those concerns a sports increasing background checks. Almost certainly not in the case like this having. And -- -- mother prepared to -- to supply him with guns would have been an end around any kind of law. The mental health system of course is lacking in people that are adjudicated with a mental illness. And how it's one of the problems in passing new gun control legislation is that it is a fact that you can't stop everything and that individual cases. When you actually draw back to the proposed legislation it's hard to it to draw straight line and see if we had passed this. And we would have gotten that done and I think there's an element in some of the emotional pleas by the families. They want to have something to show for the death of their loved ones -- -- it once they get involved in politics they wanna be able to say that they mean achievement. And we it into it you get into the details of the kind of gun legislation that's out there that might actually work. We're talking about pretty small incremental things even that the background check system the the so called gun show loophole idea that people. Inside -- families are engaged in back projects this is not a majority of gun transactions and certainly isn't a majority of the big guns that are. I use in terrible violent acts but they had the feeling that they had the channel her energies towards something get something done something achievable something that they thought that they could happen the politics around -- could massage. These are issues that pull over well even that -- unable -- pass in this environment. -- at that time it -- that there was momentum on the side for those that were advocating for further gun control as that momentum stopped. It's gone in -- there really isn't any other discussion oddity of politics in Washington is -- is a game of momentum. And of capitalizing on moments and there was a moment for gun control earlier this year and this in the in the wake of -- town you had. Many even very strongly. The NRA endorsed politician say something's different now there's something wrong with the country. How would they were sick of -- they're sick of the fact that we kept coming back to that kind of moment. And you felt like the politics can finally move it through this council -- politics -- and control finally cracking. And again they got close but that's all they -- and I think the other things started to happen and other other issues crowd the agenda and that uses -- excuse to shelve its. Top officials have asked the media -- observe the privacy and respect from those families that were affected by this and at the same time as you pointed out though. In order to move legislation or create any kind of movement behind it. It does require face -- it does require specific event how tricky then is that politically to get something done. If in fact there has to be that distance created from those families in -- Well look we hear this in the wake of every every tragedy people say this is not the time -- is to focus on on and on -- in congress are gun legislation and I think -- -- toward. Has been for awhile now what -- when it -- is the time because it never seems to be an appropriate time the country focuses on. Episodes of gun violence and a predictable sadly predictable clip of several times a year. We know that it will happen in this will happen to somebody -- will be a mass shooting event they'll be talk about it and we back probably were restarted before. What seemed to me to tell different was that the presence of children. And the emotional -- the emotional words and just and that press -- how hard it is the listened to as a parent anywhere in this country. That's what seems to change the politics on this but I think we're at right now I'm short of of a major change in who's in power in Washington. It's hard to imagine any intervening -- no matter how horrible. Changing the politics around the city people made down those judgments -- -- -- -- based on the policy and politics -- And it is it not shown any likelihood the changes. From Rick let me ask you this and what to the prospects look like and given the 24 teens -- mid terms fast approaching as far as any kind of legislation or -- on gun control. I think pretty close to zero but here's the interesting thing again you have a number of these groups that are trying to actively change the politics are on gun control they're making -- -- part of their mission. -- Val to support candidates who vote for new gun control legislation and to try to oust candidates who oppose it. And if you can demonstrate to politicians that this is a way. That your history this is -- issue the physicians feel strongly about this is it so we have to be concerned about when you actually cast votes. That has the potential -- change things because that's the power of the NRA it is it's not like there. At some kind of of a secret code that they have cracked all it is is that they know that the issues. That they get involved in our voting issues in many districts in many states around the country so they're afraid of the backlash for -- anyone it would it would. Support any even modest new restrictions on gun ownership if you can -- that in the other direction and say we're gonna hold spit politicians equally accountable. Before holding up new gun laws. Then that's how you start something and that's going to be one of these parents and one of the things to watch and 2014 races around the country. How active are the outside groups including Gabby Giffords group and -- mayor Bloomberg's group including. The Brady campaign which has been around for twenty years now. How how much did they get involved in races and -- they're able to demonstrate. That the politics of gun control -- not just one side that it's actually possible to support new gun controls and be rewarded for politically. The president made a very visual appeal. In response. To sandy hook going to Newtown four commemorate commemorative ceremonies the First Lady as well. And promising. That he would not rest before new laws were passed. In reality though where -- gun control rank and the president's agenda today. I -- say he's resting but he certainly is an actively pushing it right now because he knows what the results are going to be. Let's -- you flip some votes in the senate you're not gonna pass the senate with sixty votes and LSU. -- all lot of votes in the house and put pressure on the leadership there you know I get it done -- -- other issues that have taken up all other time need to roll out of obamacare is consumed much of the last two months we have the budget crisis after budget crisis immigration reform also assault -- the house right now. Another issue that the administration has gotten sidetracked on. And I haven't seen a lot of inclination -- likely that I think of White House officials are pretty honest of the fact that. They they they feel like they need some kind of outside forced to move things along with this is nothing they can do the president can go give speeches. Every day between now in the mid term elections about gun control it's not gonna change the attitude of most members of the Republican caucus in particular. In congress that this is not something that's worth pursuing and they don't feel the pressure to do it they're certainly not gonna bring it up on their own. All right ABC's political director Rick Klein in Washington Rick thank you for that we appreciate that. This has spent an ABC news digital special report one year after the tragedy -- sandy of the families of those victims speaking up for. That anniversary. Of that terrible day. A full -- up right here and abcnews.com for -- damp cloth or New York.
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