On Wednesday night at Newtown High School, Dr. William Begg testified during the final hearing of the Connecticut legislature's Bipartisan Task Force on Gun Violence Prevention and Children's Safety. Dr. Begg was working the emergency room on December 14, when the massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary happened.
In his latest Rewrite segment, Lawrence O'Donnell shared Begg's testimony in which he pleaded with state lawmakers to help lower gun violence and allow him to caution patients about firearms:
"... what I'm asking for is (that) you consider a stronger assault weapons ban, elimination of the sale of semi-automatic weapons, restrictions on the size of magazine clips, number of rounds, extend background checks and also please let us do some gun research that's real... Allow me as a medical doctor, when I see a patient or when my colleagues see a patient, when I educate them on the effects of alcohol or tobacco, safe sex, motor vehicle accidents, can I please talk to them about the risks of gun violence? Please?"
An emotional Begg also told the families of those who were killed in the massacre, "On behalf of the ER, we tried our best. We tried our best."
During his testimony, Dr. Begg mentioned that he disagreed with another of the panel's witnesses, Mike Collins. Collins, who testified immediately before Begg, is a hunter and NRA instructor who told the task force that gun control only puts more restrictions on law-abiding citizens and "the people responsible for the outrage to begin with totally ignore the rules."