US film, TV and music stars in video demanding gun control action
LOS ANGELES (AFP) - Film, television and music stars including Jeremy Renner, Gwyneth Paltrow and Beyonce have recorded a hard-hitting video urging action on gun control following the Newtown school massacre.
Julianne Moore, Jamie Foxx, Selena Gomez and Chris Rock also appear in the video, backing a Demand A Plan campaign which notably seeks a ban on assault weapons, as well as criminal background checks for every gun sold in America.
"Columbine. Virginia Tech. Tucson. Aurora. Fort Hood. Oak Creek. Newtown.
Newtown. Newtown," they intone in the black-and-white video, taking turns to list the names of America's worst gun massacres of recent years.
"How many more? How many more colleges? How many more classes? How many more movie theaters? How many more houses of faith? How many more shopping malls?" they add.
The video, also featuring Ellen DeGeneres, Jon Hamm, Reese Witherspoon, Cameron Diaz, Jennifer Aniston and Conan O'Brien, appears on the website of the campaign claiming 750 mayors and 750,000 supporters "to demand that President Obama and Congress step forward with a plan to end gun violence."
"For the children of Sandy Hook," says Beyonce, referring to the elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, where a gunman slaughtered 20 young children and six adults last Friday, in one of the worst US massacres ever.
The Demand A Plan campaign calls for criminal background checks to be required for every gun sold in America; assault weapons and high-capacity magazines to be banned; and that gun trafficking be made a federal crime.
"Our efforts cannot bring back the 20 innocent children murdered in Newtown...or the 34 people murdered with guns every day in America. But we can prevent future tragedies by passing common sense legislation," it says.
The video can be seen at http: www.demandaplan.org.
Mr Obama this week appointed Vice-President Joe Biden to head a task force charged with framing proposals within a month to stem a rash of US gun violence.
On Friday, the National Rifle Association (NRA), breaking a week-long silence, called for armed police to be deployed in every school in the country, saying: "The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun."