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‘It’s a national embarrassment for us’; Hochul fumes over gun violence in wake of Illinois mass shooting

CORRECTION APTOPIX Shooting-July Fourth Parade
CORRECTS TO A LAKE FOREST POLICE OFFICER, INSTEAD OF LAKE COUNTY A Lake Forest, Ill., police officer walks down Central Ave in Highland Park, Ill., on Monday, July 4, 2022, after a shooter fired on the northern suburb’s Fourth of July parade. (Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune via AP)

Governor Kathy Hochul lambasted national inaction and malaise on stopping gun violence following a Fourth of July mass shooting in Highland Park, Illinois.

A gunman killed six people and injured dozens at a Fourth of July parade in the Chicago suburb on Monday. The shooting, Hochul told press at the Navy Yard, brings the national total up to 309 mass shootings so far this year — including the deadly Buffalo supermarket massacre in May that claimed 10 lives.

During a bill-signing ceremony at the Brooklyn Navy Yard on Tuesday, Hochul called the count of gun massacres a “national embarrassment.”

“Three hundred and nine mass shootings thus far this year, the twelfth this month. Do I need to remind you what date this is? It’s July 5th. Twelfth this month,” she said.

“How many more tears have to be shed because the insanity of gun violence and its captivation and its stranglehold on so many individuals and organizations in this country,” Hochul went on. “It’s appalling, and it’s a national embarrassment for us, as we think about the rest of the world.”

Mayor Eric Adams offered similar remarks during his appearance in Queens on Tuesday announcing a crackdown on fake license plates. Hizzoner said he reached out to Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot not only about the suburban Chicago shooting Monday, but the others that took place in the Second City during the weekend. 

“Our hearts go out to Chicago. I communicated with the mayor of Chicago yesterday, you know, 55 shooters in Chicago in her city, another few dozen took place outside at the parade,” Adams said. “We are up against this just onslaught of guns, they have just saturated our cities and we’re going to continue to fight hard together united and locally in our cities.” 

At the scenes of recent shootings in the Big Apple, Adams called upon various parts of the criminal justice system to assist the city and the NYPD in stopping gun criminals and keeping suspects behind bars. He repeated those sentiments Tuesday.

“We need the criminal justice system to match the urgency of our law enforcement agencies, and I just think there’s a lack of urgency. I believe that of the urgency of putting people through trials, of the shooting that we had over the weekend involving a correction officer taking action. The guy was out from a gunpoint robbery waiting to be sentenced. What was he doing on the street with a gun again? Because in his mind, we are a joke,” Adams said, referring to a shooting in Queens on Sunday night. “So we’re sending the wrong message. And so the pressure is not only from the police commissioner, the sheriff, our law enforcement partners. The pressure must come from the public.”

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