Good morning, Bulletin readers. In the final installment of our three-part series on solutions to community gun violence, a former federal and state policymaker draws from his new book to argue why violence prevention has to be the first step in addressing urban poverty and injustice.
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NEW FROM THE TRACE
Commentary: We can’t end inequality unless we first stop the shootings. In an adaptation from his new book Bleeding Out, Thomas Abt argues that addressing community violence would not only save thousands of lives, but also have a profound impact on inequality. Urban violence is “the linchpin of concentrated urban poverty,” writes Abt, “holding all the other conditions — joblessness, homelessness, poor education, and health — in place. That’s why we must put urban violence first in terms of sequence, if not importance. Until we pull this pin, poverty in our cities will remain as persistent as ever.” How much would it cost? According to his calculations, less than you may think.
Lawsuit alleges Wayne LaPierre sought to block internal probe of NRA spending. In a new counterclaim against the gun group filed yesterday, Oliver North, the former National Rifle Association president, provides new details about what he describes as efforts by LaPierre and his allies to quash an internal examination of the allegations of financial impropriety that came to light through our investigative reporting.
WHAT TO KNOW TODAY
Amnesty International: U.S. government has an obligation to better compensate the shooting victims it has failed to protect. In a new report, the global nonprofit argues that the United States has failed to limit access to the guns that are causing “a human rights crisis.” As such, it concludes, the government should pay for the exorbitant health care costs associated with gun violence. Context: Millions of dollars are set aside annually to compensate crime victims, but the programs do a poor job reaching shooting survivors, as our reporting has shown.
Former top NRA lobbyist Chris Cox is starting a consulting firm. Cox resigned last month, a week after the gun rights group accused him in a suit of being part of an effort to oust LaPierre. Now, Cox is launching his own firm, Capital 6 Advisors, he told Politico.
A group is trying to recall Colorado’s governor, citing the state’s new red flag law. The Colorado Secretary of State’s office has approved a recall effort of the state’s governor, Jared Polis. The organization, Dismiss Polis, lists several grievances against the governor. Chief among them is the state’s new extreme risk protection order, which enables friends or family members to petition a court to have someone’s legally purchased gun taken away if they present a clear danger to themselves or others.
Alabama Governor Kay Ivey signed a bill into law Thursday making it a Class C felony to possess a stolen gun. The measure had strong backing from the law enforcement community, and was written after a Mobile police officer was shot to death by an attacker using a stolen firearm.
A Disney star’s campaign against gun violence will continue despite his death. In the weeks before his sudden passing, actor Cameron Boyce was working on a social media campaign to combat gun violence. Though a spokesman, Boyce’s family told People magazine that the campaign, organized with Parkland survivor Delaney Tarr, will go on as a way to honor Boyce’s legacy.
ONE LAST THING
How gunshot injuries galvanized the medical community against gun violence. “I see more gunshot wounds as a trauma surgeon here in the United States per week than I did when I was serving in Kandahar, Afghanistan,” said Dr. Mallory Williams, chief of the Division of Trauma and Critical Care at Howard University Hospital. “There’s no question about it.” In the short documentary, American Trauma: How the NRA Sparked a Medical Rebellion, doctors around the country discuss how they viewed the stand against gun violence as confronting an acute public health crisis.