Mizzou holds vigil for Sandy Hook victims

Dozens of people gathered on the MU campus this afternoon to remember those lost in the Sandy Hook massacre.

MU Chancellor Brady Deaton led a vigil in honor of the Connecticut shooting victims and their families.

The Sandy Hook massacre has brought more signs that the attitude on the Mizzou campus leans toward stricter gun control laws.

Some people gathered at the Mizzou vigil said the massacre of 20 children and six adults by a gunman with a military style rifle shows we need to think about new regulations on assault weapons.

About 200 members of the Mizzou community followed MU Chancellor Brady Deaton and his wife Ann as they placed a green and white wreath on the campus value statement display near the MU Columns. White represents the purity of the victims of the Sandy Hook massacre. Green represents the cycle of life. Sandy Gummersheimer has worked at Mizzou for nearly two decades. Gummersheimer calls herself an anti-gun advocate and believes the federal government should adopt stricter gun laws.

Gummersheimer said, â??Semi-automatic weapons have no place in society period. I think all ammunition should come off the shelves instantly.â??

Columbia Criminal Defense Attorney Jennifer Bukowsky said tougher federal gun laws are not the answer. The mother of a kindergartener and a 3-year-old said the problem with guns can best be solved on the local level.

Bukowsky said, â??Look to our local schools individually and look at their safety. Are those kids trained on what to do if something like this were to occur? We should not look for a broad based federal solution to this problem.â??

Supporters and opponents of stricter federal gun laws both said that mental illness is the biggest problem we face when comes to a tragedy like the one in Connecticut. Both agree our society needs to better address the problems of mental health, if we are to prevent more shootings.

The federal ban on assault weapons expired in 2004.