Obama Says We Can't Accept Violence as Normal at Memorial Service

The president spoke to families of Washington Navy Yard shooting victims Sunday.

Posted: 09/23/2013 08:04 AM EDT

President Obama urged Americans Sunday to speak up for tougher gun control laws at a memorial service honoring the victims of the D.C. Navy Yard shootings that took the lives of 12 people. The service was held at the parade grounds of the Marine Barracks in Washington, D.C.

"I'm here today to say there's nothing routine about this tragedy. There's nothing routine about your loss," the president told families at the service.

He said it was his fifth time speaking at a service for victims of mass shootings. "It ought to obsess us. It ought to lead us to some sort of transformation," he said.

In April, Congress rejected Obama's proposals to restrict certain types of guns sold and to implement background checks for more gun sales. He blamed the current inefficient gun laws for the murder rate that is three times higher than other developed countries.

"By now, though, it should be clear that the change we need will not come from Washington, even when tragedy strikes Washington," he said.

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 (Photo: AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)


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