President Obama Spoke Out About the Orlando Mass Shooting

June 12th 2016

Kyle Jaeger

Hours after a gunman opened fire at a gay nightclub in Orlando, Florida, killing 50 people and injuring 53 others, President Barack Obama delivered a speech at the White House. He expressed sympathy for the victims and called for renewed efforts to reform gun laws in America.


"This was an act of terror and an act of hate," Obama said. While many details about the the attack and shooter remain unclear, Obama said "what is clear is that he was a person filled with hate."

The attack in Orlando marks the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history — a point that Obama acknowledged during his speech. He also recognized that this was not the first time he's given a speech following a mass shooting in America.

"This is an especially heartbreaking day for all of our friends, our fellow Americans, who are lesbian, gay, bisexual, or transgender," Obama said. "The shooter targeted a nightclub where people came together to be with friends, to dance and to sing and to live."

Obama continued:

"Today marks the most deadly shooting in American history. This massacre is therefore a further reminder of how easy it is for someone to get their hands on a weapon that lets them shoot people at a school, or in a house of worship, or in a movie theater, or in a nightclub. And we have to decide if that's the kind of country we want to be. To tactically do nothing is a decision, as well."

Throughout his two terms as president, Obama has made repeated calls for gun control reform, but those efforts have been largely blocked. He proposed a series of measures designed to limit gun violence in America in January, using his executive powers to expand background checks and increase funding for mental health treatment.

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