Taya Kyle went head-to-head with President Barack Obama about gun control during an event at George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, on Thursday, January 7.
Kyle, 41, is the widow of the sniper Chris Kyle portrayed by Bradley Cooper in the 2014 blockbuster, Oscar-nominated drama American Sniper. The late Navy SEAL was shot and killed by a war vet with PTSD in February 2013. On Thursday, Taya told POTUS, 54, that gun control will not stop mass shootings.
"[What] we have to recognize is we cannot outlaw murder, because the people who are murdering are breaking the law, but they also don’t have the moral code that we have," she said, via CNN. "They can do the same amount of damage with a pipe bomb. The problem is that they want to murder. We want to think we can make a law and people will follow it, but by the very nature of their crime, they are not following it."
The mom of two also stated that crime has actually gone down in the past 20 years and she hopes that the country will "value freedom" to bear arms.
Obama, who fielded comments and questions from many others, replied that the National Rifle Association is to blame for leading citizens to believe that the government wants to take away all firearms. He also declared that if his motive was to ban guns, then he would have done so earlier in his presidency.
"If you look at where the areas are with the highest gun ownership, those are the places that the crime hasn’t dropped down that much," he told Taya. "The way it is described is that we are trying to take away everybody's guns. Our position is consistently mischaracterized.... If you listen to the rhetoric, it is so over-the-top, it is so overheated."
In addition, Obama later told the crowd that he has never owned a gun and wants Congress to create a better background check that will keep the country safer.
"All of us can agree that it makes sense to do everything we can to keep guns out of the hands of people who would do others harm, or themselves harm," he said at the time. "The fact that the system doesn't catch every single person has to be weighed against the fact that we might be able to save a whole bunch of families from the grief that some of the people in this audience have had to go through."
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