Sen. Bernie Sanders touched some hot topics during a weekend-long rally in Louisiana and drew nearly 4,000 people to a convention center in New Orleans on Sunday night where he talked about racism, income gap, criminal justice reform, and gun control.
Sen. Sanders who is now running for president as a Democrat addressed an audience that is very sensitive to problems like police brutality and racism. When he brought into discussion gun control he said that Americans should focus on adopting “common sense” gun control.
But the speech was mostly focused on economic problems. Sanders said that the current economy which works for the rich and to the detriment of the middle class should see some reforms. He promised a $15 hourly wage for all workers, paid family leave for new moms and a plan to revamp infrastructure and thus provide new jobs.
He also mentioned Sandra Bland, a black woman brutally arrested by police officers who committed suicide in her prison cell in Texas. Sanders said that a middle-class white woman would never be “yanked out of her car” in the middle of traffic. That’s why the U.S. criminal justice system should be overhauled, Sanders concluded.
On gun control he provided more details during a press conference on Sunday afternoon. He said that in the rural regions of Vermont people use guns in hunting. But people in the urban states have a different mentality about the issue which can be addressed without yelling at each other.
“We need a common sense solution,”
argued the senator.
He also proposed tighter regulation on gun sales. He believes that background checks should be stricter in order not to allow a mentally disturbed person or an individual with a criminal record to own one.
Last month, Sanders was rattled by protesters in Phoenix on police brutality and racism issues. The senator attended the Netroots Nation convention at that time.
This weekend, Sanders told Louisiana residents that he too was a civil rights activist during his college years. He recalled taking part in protests as a student and battling housing segregation during his membership at the Congress for Racial Equality.
He also used quotes from a Martin Luther King’s speech in 1968 to back his opinion that racism is directly linked to lack of jobs and income inequality. Income inequality and the gap between the rich and poor is a major theme of the wild-eyed socialist’s presidential campaign.
Image Source: Salon
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