Lisa Davenport arrived in Hartford on Monday at 9 a.m., and at 12:30 a.m. Tuesday her number was finally called.
Davenport, a Durham resident and business owner, was among the more than 2,000 people who attended Monday's public hearing in Hartford on public safety at the Legislative Office Building.
The hearing invoked passion on both sides of the gun control debate.
"It was an amazing day. Exhausting, but incredible to see so many people passionate on this sensitive issue."said Davenport, who also attended a pro-gun rally in Hartford earlier this month.
The following is the statement Davenport submitted to state legislators:
Thank you members of the Commission for your dedication.
I'd also like to take a moment to thank the military both active & retired, it is because of their sacrifices I'm able to stand before you today.
I don't have for you today a list of statistics or facts, rather my observations.
Gun ownership. Our country, our state, our towns, and for some our families are on the brink of becoming irrevocably divided. Somehow those who support the 2nd amendment are viewed as far right wing, selfish, un-compassionate militants by those who support restrictive gun laws. Those supporting those restrictions are seen as liberal, constitutional infringing, freedom haters by the other side. The truth is we are all Americans living in the most amazing country on earth.
The Sandy Hook Massacre affected all of us differently. I was effected on multiple levels. As a Mom I held my children tight and mourned the loss of so many beautiful angels. As a daughter & sister to four teachers I was shocked by the realization if it was another school I could have lost one of them. As a wife of a professional firefighter/paramedic, I grieved for the first responders, knowing they will live with the horror of that day for the rest of their lives and for their families who will have to bear that burden also.
Still that dreadful day did not sway my belief in our Second Amendment......because this horrific crime was not committed by a respectable, law abiding citizen. Instead it was a sick, mentally ill young man with to many demons to ward off, and clearly not the right amount of help to do so.
I ask you, Senators and Representatives to legislate reasonably and sensibly, and as hard as it might be not with emotions, rather with common sense. We can not legislate away tragedy. I encourage you to consider how we are protecting our children, it may sound cliche but we protect our banks & celebrities with guns but leave our children as sitting ducks in a 'gun free' school zone, where any sick minded person knows they can easily implement their plan without any powerful resistance for several long minutes. What message are we sending .... that money and fame is more valuable than our children?
We have a responsibility to our children to keep them safe, to continually offer opportunity to flourish, to succeed..... To live a life of freedom, liberty and enjoy the pursuit of happiness. After all they are our future.
Ronald Reagan once said......
We must reject the idea that every time a law's broken, society is guilty rather than the lawbreaker. It is time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions.
I leave you with this......Overly bearing Gun Control, presents the assumption that everyone is a potential criminal. Would that be the country our founding fathers, and so many others sacrificed so much for?