Parkland school shooting survivor David Hogg is speaking out after a mass shooting in Virginia Beach left 12 people dead, with the teenager joining a number of others in decrying the latest act of mass murder in the United States and calling for changes.
Friday’s shooting took place inside a Virginia Beach municipal building, when police say a gunman began firing indiscriminately, killing 12 people and sending four others to the hospital. As CNN reported, police identified the gunman as a disgruntled employee who was later killed after an extended shootout with police.
The shooting rocked the community, with many local and state officials offering condolences after the attack.
“This is the most devastating day in the history of Virginia Beach,” said Mayor Bobby Dyer. “The people involved are our friends, coworkers, neighbors, colleagues.”
The Virginia Beach shooting has also sparked a debate over gun violence in the United States, with many saying it is another example of the need for gun reform. David Hogg, a student at Stoneman Douglas High School, and a survivor of the deadly shooting that took place there in 2018, offered his thoughts on the shooting on Friday evening.
“How many more,” he tweeted.
Others joined in calling on lawmakers to pass gun reform, a frequent refrain in the wake of mass shootings in the United States. There have been a series of mass shootings in 2019, including another workplace attack in Aurora, Illinois, in February that left five people dead.
Proponents of gun reform say the regularity with which these deadly shootings occur could be addressed by restricting the high-powered rifles often used in the attacks. It was not immediately clear what kind of firearm the Virginia Beach gunman used in Friday’s attack.
Thoughts and Prayers appreciate all the love but have asked us all to pass gun control because this is absolute madness. https://t.co/Y2d0mV8U9t— Wajahat Ali (@WajahatAli) May 31, 2019
The Virginia Beach shooting has also prompted calls for gun reform from many of the 2020 presidential candidates. Some issued more vague calls for reform, including Joe Biden.
“11 innocent lives cut down. 11 more futures denied. When will we finally say enough is enough? It’s long past time to hold our leaders accountable. Jill and I are heartbroken that more American families are suffering tonight in Virginia Beach,” Biden wrote on Twitter.
Others were more specific in calling for gun reforms, like Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders.
“Jane and I are grieving for the victims in Virginia Beach and their families,” Sanders tweeted. “The days of the NRA controlling Congress and writing our gun laws must end. Congress must listen to the American people and pass gun safety legislation. This sickening gun violence must stop.”