Princeton, NJ: 2.15.2018 – The Rev. Robert Moore, Executive Director of the Princeton-based Coalition for Peace Action (CFPA), issued the following statement on behalf of CFPA’s Ceasefire NJ Project in response to the February 14 mass shooting at a school in Florida.

“Yet another mass shooting occurred at a school in Florida on February 14, killing at least 17 people and wounding at least 14. Our thoughts and prayers go out to all the victims and their families.

But we must do more than offer thoughts and prayers, we must act to prevent more mass shootings! They are now occurring in the US at an average of more than one per day. It is especially alarming that this is the 18th school shooting of 2018.

We don’t yet know this shooter’s motives, but we do know that he used an assault weapon, mass shooters’ weapon of choice. They are meant for the battlefield, which is the only place they should be allowed. They can rapidly fire bullets as fast as the shooter can pull the trigger. We need to again ban them nationally.

In 1993, we in Ceasefire NJ helped successfully defend the NJ Assault Weapons Ban against an NRA effort to rescind it. The fact that we were successful in breaking the NRA’s stranglehold in New Jersey helped inspire the 1994 passage of a ten-year National Assault Weapons Ban, resulting in a 2/3 reduction in crimes using them. We must pass into law a National Assault Weapons Ban again.

We also urgently need a national Extreme Risk Protection Order (ERPO), which would allow law enforcement, family members or acquaintances to petition a judge to remove guns from anybody deemed to be at high risk of using them.

For the five states that already have such laws, the removal can be immediate for up to two months, and can be extended for up to a year. It is estimated that in CT, one of the five states, a life is saved for every 10-20 such ERPO orders issued.

But it will take average citizens to persistently and effectively advocate for such steps. To learn more, visit peacecoalition.org and click the Ceasefire NJ icon on the right.”

The Rev. Robert Moore is Executive Director of the Princeton-based Coalition for Peace Action, of which Ceasefire NJ is a Project.