WASHINGTON, D.C. — President Joe Biden is again ordering American flags be flown at half-staff to honor the victims of a mass shooting, this time in Indianapolis.
Overnight, authorities say a gunman killed at least eight people and injured several others when he opened fire at a FedEx facility late Thursday. The city’s police department says the suspect drove to the facility and began firing in the parking lot before moving inside and shooting more people. He was found dead inside the building and police suspect he took his own life.
Biden said in a statement issued Friday that he and Vice President Kamala Harris have been briefed on the shooting. As they await more details, the president said he has the “solemn duty” of ordering the flag be lowered at half-staff at the White House, public buildings, military posts and embassies.
“God bless the eight fellow Americans we lost in Indianapolis and their loved ones, and we pray for the wounded for their recovery,” wrote Biden.
Biden is also calling on Congress to enact “commonsense gun violence prevention legislation,” such as universal background checks and a ban on “weapons of war” and high-capacity magazines.
“Gun violence is an epidemic in America. But we should not accept it. We must act,” wrote Biden in his statement.
Biden said the government can and must do more to act and to save lives from gun violence.
“Too many Americans are dying every single day from gun violence. It stains our character and pierces the very soul of our nation,” said Biden.
During a press event after meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, Biden was against asked about gun control measures. He reiterated that the number of mass shootings in this country is a "national embarrassment."
"Who in God’s name needs a weapon that can hold 100 rounds, or 40 rounds, or 20 rounds?" the president asked rhetorically, "It's just wrong."
The shooting in Indiana is the latest in a string of tragic mass shootings after an apparent lull during the coronavirus pandemic. Biden has responded similarly to recent deadly shootings at spas in the Atlanta area, a grocery store in Boulder, and a home in Rock Hill, South Carolina.
And although enacting so-called commonsense gun reform is generally popular among the American people, Congress has failed to pass anything substantial on the matter as of late.