If you're doing the math, that averages out to about five people per day being shot. For a city that prides itself on being one of the safest big cities in the country – the world even – that number is way too high.
And it's hard to blame Mayor Michael Bloomberg. He has been at the forefront on this issue at the national level, sounding the alarm about the dangers that illegal guns pose to law-abiding citizens, but there is only so much he can do at the local level.
(Although, his seeming willingness to do more with less when it comes to staffing the NYPD isn't necessarily helping when it comes to public safety, but that's a different issue.)
Where progress can be made is at the state level. After yet another shooting at the Queensbridge Houses in Long Island City, the area's councilman, Jimmy Van Bramer, introduced resolutions in the City Council calling on the State Legislature to pass bills that would require a 10-day waiting period on all firearms, limit gun purchases to one per month, and close background check loopholes, among other initiatives.
The State Legislature is currently mulling over calling a special session to tackle a very important issue – giving themselves a pay raise. It's unlikely that will happen before the election in November – that would look bad to voters – so in the meantime they could call a special session to address the issue of gun violence in New York City.
That's exactly what Brooklyn state senator Daniel Squadron is calling on Albany lawmakers to do. Last week, after a shooting in his district, he called for a special legislative session to tackle this problem.
There's no logical reason why this shouldn't happen.
Passing a few bills obviously won't solve the problem overnight. Criminals will still find ways to get guns, and it won't address the issue of how easy it is to purchase a gun in other states across the nation.
But doing nothing won't help either.