Georgia Sen. Isakson proposes mass violence research


SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – With more Americans worried about becoming a victim in a mass violence incident, Georgia Senator Johnny Isakson is proposing legislation to research the problem and try to find ways to prevent it.

“I am tired of saying, ‘We just don’t know what to do,'” Isakson told News 3. “It seems like we always look for some way to find the answers and we never seem to find them and I think it’s because there’s never been a total focus on the research.”

Isakson has proposed legislation to fund the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) to the tune of $375 million (over five years) to “research what factors are contributing to the recent increase in acts of mass violence and to better identify individuals who may be inclined to commit these acts.”

Isakson says the research could help determine if there are points in which intervention would prevent such incidents.

Isakson’s bill says the research would center on a “physical assault carried out with implements (which may include knives, clubs, motor vehicles, firearms or explosives) resulting in the injury or death of 3 or more victims, not including the perpetrator.

The bill indicates the research is not about gun control per se. In terms of the more than 280 mass violence incidents so far this year, the vast majority has involved the use of a gun.

Still, Isakson says understanding why someone would do this is about more than just weapons.

“It’s a mindset of someone that they would ever think of creating a mass loss of life from any type of weapon whether it be a gun, a knife, a bomb or whatever it might be,” Isakson told News 3.

“This is not the time to focus on one method or one death, it’s about results. We want to diagnose the problem, not be afraid to solve the problem,” Isakson said.

He says he’s already heard from at least one Democrat who is interested in supporting the bill. In terms of the entire Congress, Isakson believes the bill might help citizens a message. “I think it’s time we make it clear that nobody wants to see mass death,” he said.

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