President Obama signs 23-point gun-control order

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President Obama signs 23-point gun-control order: The plan focuses on four areas: Closing background check loopholes, banning military-style assault weapons and high-capacity magazines, providing schools with safety resources, and increasing access to mental health services. The full list of executive actions provided by the White House includes:

  1. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal agencies to make relevant data available to the federal background check system.
  2. Address unnecessary legal barriers, particularly relating to the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, that may prevent states from making information available to the background check system.
  3. Improve incentives for states to share information with the background check system.
  4. Direct the Attorney General to review categories of individuals prohibited from having a gun to make sure dangerous people are not slipping through the cracks.
  5. Propose rulemaking to give law enforcement the ability to run a full background check on an individual before returning a seized gun.
  6. Publish a letter from ATF to federally licensed gun dealers providing guidance on how to run background checks for private sellers.
  7. Launch a national safe and responsible gun ownership campaign.
  8. Review safety standards for gun locks and gun safes (Consumer Product Safety Commission).
  9. Issue a Presidential Memorandum to require federal law enforcement to trace guns recovered in criminal investigations.
  10. Release a DOJ report analyzing information on lost and stolen guns and make it widely available to law enforcement.
  11. Nominate an ATF director.
  12. Provide law enforcement, first responders, and school officials with proper training for active shooter situations.
  13. Maximize enforcement efforts to prevent gun violence and prosecute gun crime.
  14. Issue a Presidential Memorandum directing the Centers for Disease Control to research the causes and prevention of gun violence.
  15. Direct the Attorney General to issue a report on the availability and most effective use of new gun safety technologies and challenge the private sector to develop innovative technologies
  16. Clarify that the Affordable Care Act does not prohibit doctors asking their patients about guns in their homes.
  17. Release a letter to health care providers clarifying that no federal law prohibits them from reporting threats of violence to law enforcement authorities.
  18. Provide incentives for schools to hire school resource officers.
  19. Develop model emergency response plans for schools, houses of worship and institutions of higher education.
  20. Release a letter to state health officials clarifying the scope of mental health services that Medicaid plans must cover.
  21. Finalize regulations clarifying essential health benefits and parity requirements within ACA exchanges.
  22. Commit to finalizing mental health parity regulations.
  23. Launch a national dialogue led by Secretaries Sebelius and Duncan on mental health.

In gun control speech, Obama rejects radical individualism: “Along with our freedom to live our lives as we will comes an obligation to allow others to do the same,” he said. “We don’t live in isolation. We live in a society, a government for and by the people. We are responsible for each other.” “That most fundamental set of rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, fundamental rights that were denied to college students at Virginia Tech and high school students at Columbine and elementary school students in Newtown,” he went on. “And kids on street corners in Chicago on too frequent basis to tolerate; and all the families who never imagined they’d lose a loved one to a bullet, those rights are at stake. We’re responsible.”

Limbaugh mocks kids at Obama gun safety event, calls them ‘human shields’: On his radio show yesterday, Limbaugh mocked the children appearing alongside President Obama at Wednesday’s announcement of gun safety measures, calling them “human shields.” “Obama uses kids as human shields, ” Limbaugh told his listeners. “He brings these kids who supposedly wrote letters to the White House after Newtown, bring them up there to present a picture of support among the children for the president to do something about guns. It’s gonna be very difficult, very difficult to oppose it.” Then, adopting a mocking tone of voice, he continued, “You got these little kids there. ‘They don’t want to die.’ ‘How can you not listen to them? We’ve gotta do something.’ That’s the picture.”

Political Pornography: ‘Morning Joe’ hosts eviscerate ‘sick in the head’ NRA for targeting Obama’s kids. “What’s wrong with these people, Mika?” MSNBC’s Joe Scarborough asked co-host Mika Brzezinski. “You have children who had no say in the decision in whether their father, who is going to step forward to be president of the United States, to run for president — one of the most bone-crushing, sacrificing things any husband or wife can do to their family. And the second they make that decision, their children and their entire family have targets on their backs.” “And the NRA is putting something out?” he continued. “What’s wrong with these people? Putting out apps that 4 year olds can play on the anniversary of the Newtown murders and now putting out an ad talking about the president’s daughters.” “They are out of step, out of the mainstream, totally out of sync with what’s going on in our society and, quite frankly after seeing that, I think that some of the people who run that thing are sick,” Brzezinski agreed. “I really do. I think they are sick in the head.”

Conn. town receives “veiled physical threats” after proposing new gun restrictions: Selectman Dennis Tracey of Weston, Conn. says his town has received “veiled physical threats” after the local government proposed new gun restrictions. “We got significant pressure from outside which was really surprising, including outside groups posting our names and personal information on their websites,” Tracey said on Jansing & Co Wednesday.”We’ve gotten emails and phone calls at our homes from all over the country…from people who really don’t care about the people of our town but really have an agenda to push and are trying to put pressure on us to stop our rational conversation.”

• The logic of that [idiotic NRA] ad says that we all have a right to government paid for armed guards, just like the president and his family, in case some nut tries to kill us. And indeed, we do. They’re called police officers and the nation is crawling with them. The president and his family, however, need extra protection because they are often the specific targets of random obsessive nut cases and political assassins. The threats and attempts on their lives happen a hell of a lot more often than it does to anyone else. And sometimes, they are successful. If these gun owners truly believe that they and their families are in as much danger as the president and his, then we are already in a dystopian nightmare from which there is probably no escape.

• NRA is repugnant and cowardly, targets Obama’s kids, and makes money off the Sandy Hook massacre. But what’s particularly disturbing, beyond using the President’s under-age children as collateral damage in a political spat with their father, and beyond playing politics with the Sandy Hook massacre and the death of 20 children, is the fact that the NRA is using the Sandy Hook tragedy to list-build and fundraise.

• “Most Americans agree that a president’s children should not be used as pawns in a political fight. But to go so far as to make the safety of the president’s children the subject of an attack ad is repugnant and cowardly,” White House spokesman Jay Carney said.

• President Obama on Wednesday announced a series of executive actions and proposed legislation designed to take the first steps toward comprehensive gun control, and announced that he will name the first permanent director of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) in more than six years. The president will nominate B. Todd Jones, currently the agency’s fifth acting director, to be its official head. The bureau has not had a permanent director since Congress required its director to face Senate confirmation in 2006, mostly because of objections to each of the nominees from Republicans and gun rights groups.

In other news

• Some 30 Algerians and 15 foreign nationals, taken hostage after a deadly attack on a gas facility in Algeria, have managed to escape from the kidnappers, state media say. Local officials said, “Thirty Algerian workers managed to escape on Thursday from the Tinguentourine gas facility, where they had been held hostage” by a group of armed men linked to rebel forces fighting in Mali, Algerian media reported. On Wednesday, two people including, a British national, reportedly died in an attack conducted by gunmen in three vehicles on a bus carrying foreign gas workers near the In Amenas gas field, west of the Libyan border. The assailants also claimed to had taken 41 foreign national hostages, among them French, British and American nationals.

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