One of The Country’s Top Police Chiefs Is Calling for Gun Control After the Texas School Shooting

Houston Police Chief Art Acevedo at the March for Our Lives on March 24.David J. Phillip/AP

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The evening after a gunman killed 10 people at a high school in Santa Fe, Texas, Houston police chief Art Acevedo took to Facebook to write an impassioned plea for gun control, writing that he had hit “rock bottom” after the massacre.

“I spent the day dealing with another mass shooting of children,” Acevedo wrote in his post. “I know some have strong feelings about gun rights…I am not interested in your views as it pertains to this issue.”

The Santa Fe High School shooting, 35 miles outside of Houston, is far from the first mass shooting to affect Texas cities in the past few years. Six months ago, 26 people were killed at the Texas First Baptist Church in Sutherland Springs, Texas. And in 2016, a gunman killed 5 police officers in Dallas. At least 99 people have died in 8 mass shootings in the state since 1984.

Acevedo has called for stronger gun measures before, and on March 24 he joined in Houston’s March for Our Lives, one of many marches across the country spearheaded by teen survivors of the February shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida.

Here is his full Facebook post:

To all my Facebook friends. Today I spent the day dealing with another mass shooting of children and a responding police officer who is clinging to life. I’m not ashamed to admit I’ve shed tears of sadness, pain and anger.

I know some have strong feelings about gun rights but I want you to know I’ve hit rock bottom and I am not interested in your views as it pertains to this issue. Please do not post anything about guns aren’t the problem and there’s little we can do. My feelings won’t be hurt if you de-friend me and I hope yours won’t be if you decide to post about your views and I de-friend you.

I have never accepted the status-quo in anything I do and I’ve never accepted defeat. And I won’t do it now. I will continue to speak up and will stand up for what my heart and my God commands me to do, and I assure you he hasn’t instructed me to believe that gun-rights are bestowed by him.

The hatred being spewed in our country and the new norms we, so-called people of faith are accepting, is as much to blame for so much of the violence in our once pragmatic Nation.

This isn’t a time for prayers, and study and Inaction, it’s a time for prayers, action and the asking of God’s forgiveness for our inaction (especially the elected officials that ran to the cameras today, acted in a solemn manner, called for prayers, and will once again do absolutely nothing).

I close by saying, I wish those that move on from this page the best. May God Bless you and keep you.

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THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

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