Celebs Hit Capitol Hill to Defend Gun Control

Chris Rock and others believe that doing nothing should not be an option.

Posted: 02/06/2013 02:21 PM EST

Several stars aligned on Capitol Hill Wednesday morning to voice their support for gun control. Chris Rock, Amanda Peet, Tony Bennett, Anna Deavere Smith and others joined several Democratic mayors, congressional lawmakers and advocates in a call for action.

Peet acknowledged that there are limits to how effective proposed new gun laws will be, but also argued that it's not an excuse to do nothing.

"Doing nothing has failed," said Peet at the event, which was sponsored by Mayors Against Illegal Guns. "To people who question the potential effectiveness and/or practicality of these measures, to the people who say it would have happened anyway or we won't catch everybody, I say doing nothing has failed."

One of the most poignant pleas came from Kerry Kennedy, daughter of Robert F. Kennedy, who was slain by gunfire in 1968.

"We passed the Gun Control Act of 1968 for my father, my uncle, Martin Luther King and Malcolm X," said Kennedy, who stood alongside Martin Luther King III at the event. "Surely we can pass a Gun Control Act of 2013 for the 20 children who lost their lives in Newtown, the school officials who died defending them and all of the Americans who had to die by a gun before we took action."

Rock urged people to follow President Obama's lead on the issue, saying that he's like the nation's dad.

"And when your dad says something, you listen," Rock said, adding "and when you don't, it usually bites you in the [expletive] later on."

Jazz legend Bennett called for a ban on assault weapons, which is perhaps the biggest hot-button area of an already controversial subject. They shouldn't be used to "go to war in our own country," he said, and should be "eliminated."

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 (Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images)

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