President Barack Obama and the entire nation was faced with grim news this past Friday when 20-year-old lone gunman Adam Lanza entered Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., killing 26 children and adults before turning his weapon on himself. Shaken by the news and swiftly moving into action, President Obama addressed the grieving community at an interfaith vigil in Newtown High School – with a challenge to the nation to come together and protect the lives of innocent children.
The speech, delivered with a few anecdotes, including one of a boy who told a panicked adult he'd lead the way because he knew karate, was as pointed as the President has ever been regarding gun-related violence. This marked the fourth time during his presidency that Obama has had to speak to the nation in the wake of a mass shooting tragedy.
President Obama Speaking At Newtown High:
Can we claim, as a nation, that we're all together there, letting them know that they are loved, and teaching them to love in return? Can we say that we're truly doing enough to give all the children of this country the chance they deserve to live out their lives in happiness and with purpose I've been reflecting on this the last few days, and if we're honest with ourselves, the answer is no. We're not doing enough.
Obama's tone became stern towards the end of his speech, saying that tragedies like Sandy Hook “must end” and that the nation needs to change in order for the country to guarantee the safety of its citizens, most especially the young. He then promised that he “will use whatever power” under his presidential rule to bolster efforts across state lines and professional fields to prevent events such as this in the future.
Watch President Obama's speech at Newtown High School Below.