US President Barack Obama has shed tears while speaking of gun massacres as he outlined measures to control the sale of the weapons.
Obama, speaking at the White House, said the “constant excuses for inaction” had to stop.
His plans for action include requiring more gun sellers to get licenses and more gun buyers to undergo background checks, moves President Obama said were well within his authority to implement without congressional approval.
“That’s why we’re here, not to do something about the last mass shooting, but to prevent the next one,” he said.
“The gun lobby may be holding Congress hostage right now, but they can’t hold America hostage.”
Obama gave his speech while surrounded by survivors and relatives of victims of shootings, recalling mass shootings in the US in the past few years and everyday gun violence in cities like Chicago.
He said the Sandy Hook massacre – where 20 children and six teachers were killed in 2012 – had changed him and he had hoped it would change the country.
Obama tried to pass expanded background check legislation after the shooting but it failed in Congress.