WASHINGTON (WTNH) — A Guilford family shared their son’s tragic story with Congress Tuesday, all in an effort to bring a standard for gun storage and safety nationwide.
U.S. Senator Richard Blumenthal (CT-D), the Chair of a Senate Judiciary Subcommittee, held the hearing Tuesday called “Stop Gun Violence: Safe Storage.”
The emotional hearing is the third in a series to examine constitutional and commonsense efforts to prevent gun violence.
Guilford mom Kristen Song spoke before Congress during Tuesday’s hearing. Her son, Ethan Song, was 15-years-old when he was tragically killed in 2018. He accidentally shot himself with a .357 magnum gun that had been improperly stored at a friend’s home.
Kristen shared his heart-wrenching story hoping to persuade lawmakers to pass a national safe gun storage law.
There were a lot of tears at the hearing.
Kristin read a story about a woman who had to say goodbye to her son, unrecognizable because of a bullet wound to his head. Kristin said the woman contemplated suicide to end her pain.
She revealed that woman was her.
“The gun owner could have saved Ethan in the time it takes to draw one breath by simply locking up his guns,” she told Congress. “If he had my beautiful boy with his infectious smile would be walking across the stage with his high school diploma next month. Instead, that night while his friends are throwing their caps into the air. I will be sitting at Ethan’s grave, and the only one speaking his name will be me.”
Despite stories like Kristin’s, there is still opposition to the “safe gun storage law.”
Sen. Ted Cruz (TX-R) says the law being proposed goes too far. Cruz says it makes it a federal crime for teenagers to have access to a gun even when defending their families.
Cruz, a ranking Republican from Texas, remarked at the hearing, “When we talk about safe storage we have to keep in mind restricting quick and ready access to a firearm potentially comes at a serious cost to peoples lives.”
A Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report done during the Obama-Biden administration estimates guns are used in a defensive manner half a million to a million times a year to prevent crime.
Lawmakers also introduced legislation directing the Consumer Product Safety Commission to establish safety standards for firearm locks and firearm safes.