Pete Buttigieg: If ‘everybody wasn’t armed,’ would police officers ‘be so quick’ to draw their guns? – Washington Examiner
DES MOINES, Iowa — Pete Buttigieg is asking whether there would be fewer police shootings if guns weren’t so prevalent on American streets.
The mayor of South Bend, Indiana, posed the question during an appearance at Saturday’s Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund’s Presidential Gun Sense Forum, held in Des Moines, Iowa.
“We’ve got to ask ourselves, if we lived in a country where everybody wasn’t armed, would officers be so quick to reach for the gun in the first place?” he said.
Buttigieg, 37, made the comments in context of his community’s experience after the fatal shooting in June of 54-year-old Eric Logan, an African American, by a white police officer responding to a call about a man breaking into car.
“We must make sure that officers are trained in deescalation, in bias training, in civil rights, equipped with non-lethal means to resolve issues, and that we have the right level of accountability, because with good accountability, officers who do the right thing and officers who do the wrong thing see justice,” he said.
Buttigieg used the event, attended by 17 Democratic presidential candidates, to call for background checks, assault-style rifle and high capacity magazine bans, and the closure of the so-called “boyfriend” and “gun show” loopholes.
The White House hopeful, vying to become the country’s first openly gay commander in chief, also pushed back against opponents who argued gun control efforts violated the Second Amendment.
“This is just not true. And we know it’s not true because we’ve already decided as a country that we’re going to draw a line: Anyone can have a slingshot, no one can have a nuclear weapon,” the former Navy reserve officer and Afghanistan war veteran said. “We’ve obviously decided somewhere here, somewhere between a water balloon and a predator drone, America gets to draw a line in order to keep ourselves safe. We’re just saying the line ought to be drawn a little tighter.”