While pleading with lawmakers to take a stronger stance on gun control, NYPD Commissioner Ray Kelly criticized President Obama for not speaking out on the issue more forcefully.
“We can never accept the notion that somehow children are going to be a part of the casualty count, whether somebody else is targeted or not. Children are not supposed to be collateral damage,” said Kelly on Sunday, following the accidental shooting of a 5-year-old girl from the Bronx. She was shot by a stray bullet, according to The New York Daily News.
Kelly emphasized deadly gun violence is a national problem, one that severely affects Obama’s hometown of Chicago.
“Maybe the city most affected [by guns] is Chicago,” Kelly said, taking a swipe at Obama. “The President’s hometown. But barely a peep out of him.”
Both President Obama and Mitt Romney were criticized for not addressing the topic with much frequency or urgency on the campaign trail.
Obama spoke about Chicago’s gun problem during the second presidential debate in October.
“What I’m trying to do is to get a broader conversation about how do we reduce the violence, generally,” Obama said in response to a question on the now-expired Federal Assault Weapons Ban. “Part of it is seeing if we can get an assault weapons ban re-introduced, but part of it is also looking at other sources of the violence, because frankly, in my hometown of Chicago there’s an awful lot of violence, and they’re not using AK-47s. They’re using cheap handguns.”
Obama’s former chief of staff, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, is a member of the Mayors Against Illegal Guns coalition, launched by New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg.