Biden Coming to Danbury to Discuss Gun Violence

The vice president will be the keynote speaker at a conference at Western Connecticut State University on Thursday, Feb. 21.

Vice President Joe Biden, the man President Barack Obama tapped to come up with the federal government's response to the Dec. 14 school shooting in Newtown, will be the keynote speaker at a conference in Danbury on Feb. 21. 

The conference, at Western Connecticut State University (WCSU), will focus on the federal government response to reducing gun violence. Danbury is just a few miles from Newtown, where 20 first graders and six educators were gunned down at Sandy Hook School on Dec. 14, 2012.

Connecticut's two newly elected U.S. Senators, Democrats Chris Murphy and Richard Blumenthal, and Congresswoman Elizabeth Esty, also a Democrat, are hosting the conference. It is not open to the public, only those who have been invited, according to a release announcing the Vice President's visit. 

The conference will include panel discussions on ways to reduce gun violence, protect kids, and make communities safer, and will include national, state, and local leaders, law enforcement, mental health experts, sportsmen, faith leaders, families and survivors of gun violence, the release states. It takes place from 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 21.

Federal Action in the Works

In the two months since the shooting in Newtown, President Obama has called on Congress to reinstitute a ban on assault rifles, limit the number of bullets in a clip, and establish a national database for mandatory universal background checks to purchase a firearm, among other proposals aimed at curbing gun violence.

'Special Visit' for Danbury

On his Twitter account, Danbury Mayor Mark Boughton alluded to Biden's visit a few days ago, before anything had been announced publicly, tweeting:

"Danbury will be getting a special visit next week..."

The vice president's visit is actually the second highly famous person to come to Danbury in the past year. His Holiness the Dalai Lama came in October of 2012 and delivered a series of speeches at WCSU.

Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 12:12 AM
Criminals choose crime because it is easier and often more profitable than working for a living. The more the odds are they will not be caught or opposed, the more crime they will commit. The more defenseless the public the more people will be victimized, hurt and killed. People around the world will sell OUR criminals all the guns they want. We live in a "free" country where it is not safe to walk the streets of most of our cities and towns at night. It is not safe to go to a convenience store. It is not safe to send our kids to the park to play without an adult. It is safer to go to war than go to Chicago or Washington DC, our Nation's capitol - what a discrace. Most of our cities are war zones where we risk walking the streets by day and the criminals own the streets at night. Those streets are not far from where the rest of America lives and violence is mobile. What is wrong with that picture. Is that the freedom and liberty our soldiers have given their blood for. We live among criminal terrorists who rule at will, EXCEPT for those perpared to defend themselves.Except for an armed citizenry the criminals would rule everywhere.
Robert Chambers February 18, 2013 at 12:22 AM
You have to think that Obama isn't completely stupid. He chose bumbling Joe to run this thing because he knows deep down he will never get the congress to go along with the gun-bans he wants. If he tries to do it by Executive Order all hell will break loose. Joe is on a fools errand here, and he's the best man for the job.
Jeff February 18, 2013 at 01:31 AM
Robert, not real worried about the Federal level. Tiny bit of sanity left, at least when it comes to the Bill of Rights. The majority remembers the recent oath they took. Then again, they pushed through Obamacare. The affordable health care act, pushed my premiums up just under 40% in the past two years. Didn't they say it was going to make it more affordable? Thanks Congress. I think there should be great concern about the state of Connecticut. Let's be honest, our great leaders in Hartford aren't known for making the best decisions. Alarming growth of debt, taxes, unemployment, deteriorating infrastructure to name a few. They will attempt to skirt customary procedure, draw up a composite bill and use a process called E-Cert or emergency certification. Sometimes you have to wonder if they relish in this gun issue distracting the public from other major issues that are crushing this state? Sadly, it looks like responsible, law abiding gun owners are next up to be punished. You only hear crickets when it comes to talk about getting tough on crimes committed with firearms. Crickets again after the Biden video. I would get behind reasonable gun control that would be effective. Haven't seen anything intelligent proposed. Getting a bad feeling that we will find out about their wisdom after an e-cert bill is passed. Similar to the Health care deal, hence the mention
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 01:45 AM
Seargeant A" You made me feel good about not being the only one not to receive an invitation to share our ideas with Vice President Joe Biden. I can understand why they do not want you there. You have the background and experience to back up your perspectives and recommendations as well as being a local father concerned about his family. They do not want to hear from you! They would not listen anyway. As for "JOE" I find him amusing and pathetic at the same time. What is really discouraging are the people who would actually take him seriously. Joe will come and go with his secret service protection which he deserves by his position. However, what is disturbing is that he likely really needs that protection. What about the rest of us? Apparently we do not need to arm ourselves to protect our families from the same kind of nuts and criminals who might harm him.
Robert Chambers February 18, 2013 at 02:27 AM
Judging from what is going on in NY State with their hastily and thoughtlessly enacted law, it's being defied at every level, even the county sheriffs are siding WITH the lawful owners. Cuomo has seen his ratings plummet and now that state is going to have to defend their actions in federal court. I don't think CT would be a whole lot different. We already have some of the most stringent gun laws in the country, none of the proposed laws that Hartford has would have prevented Newtown. The hearings in Hartford were 10-1 against more gun control... I do believe the legislature WILL pass something but hopefully it won't be so onerous as to need ignoring. Those that voted for it WILL be held accountable and it could be that this may drive even more tax paying companies out of the state (there are many firearms manufacturers here who testified too). If you listen to the anti-crowd versus the pro-gun crowd it's two different arguments. The anti gun crowd are all emotion (and they are entitled to it) the pro-gun crowd use facts. It all depends who is listening.
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 02:36 AM
Great comments from Jeff. This especially, "Sometimes you have to wonder if they (CT Democrat Politicians) relish in this gun issue distracting the public from other major issues that are crushing this state? Sadly, it looks like responsible, law abiding gun owners are next up to be punished. You only hear crickets when it comes to talk about getting tough on crimes committed with firearms." Ya what about the criminals? The public is "assuming" that proposed gun control actions will impact crime and violence. They are being deceived and they are deceiving themselves. What we see on the news nightly will not change. From what I observe, they will see more and they may be the subject.
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 03:39 AM
Jan you raise the point of the blind leading the blind or the ignorant leading the ignorant. But somebody elected these fools. They will have to suffer the consequences of that stupidity, unfortunately we must as well. So who was the Senator who said that. We must expose our fools. Good comment!
Jedi Jethro February 18, 2013 at 04:59 AM
Thank you Mr. Vice President. It says something that you bring the conversation to the area. It honors those here whose lives are forever changed due to gun violence. You have my support.
G February 18, 2013 at 05:06 AM
Actually, I believe there's a law that requires the President, VP, and others to be protected by the Secret Service. I think it must have something to do with national security or some other silly idea, and I don't believe the law makes a distinction regarding their political party. I'm not sure if Greg Burns was included in that law. Must have been an oversight.
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 05:57 AM
Gee G, you missed the point. I am prepared to protect myself and my family, Biden does not have to. But most average citizen may be required to do so at any time in most places in today's America. Even yourself. SO are you prepared to do that? How?
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 06:02 AM
"A young Ernest Hemmingway wrote some poems early in life which many thought not the best example of literary work. He complained about the age he lived in and those he lived among at the time. One of those poems follows which reminds me of the times we live in today as well as times past. The last line below is the killer (edited) where he tells us, we will get what we ask for, or what we tollerate. Let us hope we do not get what we deserve. That line reaks of truth. "The age demanded that we sing And cut away our tongue. The age demanded that we flow And hammered in the bung. The age demanded that we dance And jammed us into iron pants. And in the end the age was handed, just what it demanded."
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 07:00 AM
Mr. Chambers, I appreciated your comment about emotion and facts. God knows that there is enough emotion on both sides of the issue of senseless crime and violence in America. I share that emotion from both sides. However, I have long been both concerned and offended by the thousands who walk among us daily who woud do innocent people harm. I am equally ofended by those who do not recognize the fact that we have not been adequately protected from such people by our government. I am most offended by government that has failed to protect us by not effectively enforcing existing laws . I understand the fear, frustration and anger of those who have experienced the violation of violence in a free society who have taken for granted that they are safe where they live, finding that they are not. I have taken steps to protect myself and my family from violence, reluctantly, with the recognition that I must do so. Many in America have done the same by arming themselves. They have armed themselves for defense. Millions, have recognized from actual experience or from watching too many daily newscasts that random violence can touch their lives. They have concluded they are not safe anywhere, anyplace or at any time. They have decided not to become defenseless victims. Those who deny their vulnerability to violence must pay a price when it comes to them. Defense against violence is not an option, it is a necessary, personal and public responsibility.
Thomas Crafts February 18, 2013 at 10:58 AM
I think we should go anyway, and show Joe how much we think of him and his kind.
Michael Cragin February 18, 2013 at 12:20 PM
sometimes things happen for emotional reasons and not so called reasoning reasons........its to late for the gun fanatics....the storm surge is to big......stuff is gonna change......wether it "Helps"......stop the madness or not......gun control is not going away this time....emotion will win......gun freaks should load up on Kleenex....youll need them....
Tired of idiots February 18, 2013 at 01:11 PM
FYI the event is open to the public. I read this comment and shake my head that YOU are supposed to be a police officer.
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 02:00 PM
Thomas, they know, we know who they are. The wolves come to drive their sheep. Why go to watch the slaughter.
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 02:16 PM
Michael, people like you are the reason gun owners reject any kind of gun control because they see it as the incremental disarming of citizens backed by irrational and ignorant people. As for the Kleenex, you and those like you will need them before me. I will be able and ready to defend myself and my family. Apparently, you will not. That is when you bring out the Kleenex if you can, as a defenseless victim. Hot air and cries for mercy will not save you that day.
Susan February 18, 2013 at 06:02 PM
And the shameless exploitation of dead children by the left continues..................
Susan February 18, 2013 at 06:03 PM
Take your meds son you need them
Thomas Crafts February 18, 2013 at 08:17 PM
The problem you have is that the people you are trying to disarm are heavily armed.
Archie February 18, 2013 at 08:41 PM
so was Osama Bid Laden..............
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 08:55 PM
Thomas you are right, Understood. Sometimes I like to push the envelope till they commit to who they really are. But I would never try to disarm, especially in real life.
Greg Burns February 18, 2013 at 10:13 PM
OH Susan, the meds came just in time. Timing is everything, Thank you I needed a good long laugh, especially after that. Get him his meds or we may have to report that guy to the violence commission.
Greg Burns February 19, 2013 at 04:03 AM
Mental Illness - Got to call Susan, guns giving me a headache. Mental illness?? I will watch where this goes with great curiousity. We do not get many Lanza's. So how much resources do we spend trynig to shake them out or HELP THEM?? However, we do get many more habitual criminals, some of whom will sooner or later pick up a knife or gun to commit crime, or beat you senseless. ARE THEY MENTALLY ILL ?? Much of violent crime is by repeat offenders who we have done little about. Much of all crime is repeat offenders. The "go back to prison" rate is about 70% or more. So that is where most of the crime and violence is, except domestic violence, rage violence, bad days and alcohol. Drug related and gang violence I would just lump under crime. So where is the big mental health issue in terms of 99% of the crime committed including where people get hurt or killed. Do we hunt for the Lanza's????? - or do we deal with the 99% problem. JUST A QUESTION?
Greg Burns February 19, 2013 at 04:06 AM
Oh yea WE HAVE TO protect our kids. No way around that one. mUnfortiunately we have to do it with a gun. I would also suggest armed guards for malls, large stores, churches, hospitals, movie houses, all large public assenbles and most places open to the public. That is WHAT IT WILL TAKE to stop the lanza's. Except for citizens who carry guns. SO where is the mental health issue. WAIT - We do have thousands of kids (9000+?) each year not graduating from high school that can not read, write or speak and have NO OPTIONS, NONE. Maybe we should do something about them before they become our next batch of criminals. Ya think??
Thomas Crafts February 19, 2013 at 01:41 PM
Not really.
Greg Burns February 20, 2013 at 03:56 PM
Donald, I am tiring. I will soon crawl into my country den and fade away. Myself and two brothers fought for this country in uniform. We risked our lives to live as free men. I am enraged about the violence I see in America. I am enraged you can not walk many of our streets safely after dark, or by day for that matter. I am enraged that most cities are war zones and unsafe. I am enraged we have allowed criminals to roam among us with guns. I am enraged about Newtown and the violence we see daily all over America. People have taken up arms across this nation because they see the same thing, because they know they are not safe. Many others deny that because violence has not touched them yet, or they think violence is confined to the cities, or many just ignore it. I have armed myself because I decided my family was not safe. I know the government can not protect us. I know there is no security most places we go to protect us from violence. I have chosen to protect ourselves because I would never forgive myself if something happend and I could not. I did fight for my country to have my freedom or my life taken from me by criminals. My governmet has not protected me nor you from violence and has not protected our children. We can no longer tollerate either, especially the children in schools. However, must not be deluded by sham laws to stop criminals. We must anticipate violence, secure against it and go after those who would do violence with utmost determination.
Greg Burns February 20, 2013 at 08:22 PM
Criminal Victimization, 2011 US Bureau of Justice Statistics Michael Planty, Ph.D., Jennifer L. Truman, Ph.D. October 17, 2012 NCJ 239437 Highlights Violent Crime 2011: The rate of violent victimization increased 17%, from 19.3 victimizations per 1,000 persons age 12 or older in 2010 to 22.5 in 2011 (2.25 violent crimes per 100 persons USA). Increases in the rates of violent victimizations for whites, Hispanics, younger persons, and males accounted for the majority of the increase in violent crime. The rate of property crime increased 11%, from 125.4 per 1,000 households in 2010 to 138.7 in 2011, (12.54 property crimes per 100 persons USA). Part of the Criminal Victimization Series. The bulletin includes estimates of domestic violence, intimate partner violence, and injury and use of weapons in violent victimization. It also describes the characteristics of victims. The National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) collects information on nonfatal crimes, reported and not reported to the police, against persons age 12 or older from a nationally representative sample of U.S. households. During 2011, about 79,800 households and 143,120 persons were interviewed for the NCVS. Press Release PDF (1.8M) ASCII file (46K) Comma-delimited format (CSV) (Zip format 38K) Help for using BJS products About the Source Data National Crime Victimization Survey (NCVS) To cite this product, use the following link: http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/index.cfm?ty=pbdetail&iid=4494
Greg Burns February 21, 2013 at 12:49 PM
Simple Simon Says: Biden says BUY A SHOTGUN! Not a bad idea! I do not know about having his wife shooting it off the back porch as a self defense strategy. She may find a 12 guage a challenge to handle. You may want to check with the police about that suggestion. Certainly take a class on how you use it - in self defense - Within The Law. But imbeded in that suggestion is the admission of the necessity for self defense, with a gun no less. At least for his wife. Though the secret service may be insulted by that. Biden thinks a shotgun is easier to handle than an AR-15. Of course, he knows nothing about guns either.
Greg Burns February 22, 2013 at 09:35 PM
Donald, I think there are a lot of people out there with a realistic perspective of what it takes to STOP the bad guys. I doubt I had to influence them. They know we must protect the kids with more than lip service or innefective new laws.


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