Speaking at the White House, President Obama delivered a passionate address about Thursday's tragic mass shooting Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon, where 7 to 10 people were killed.
"There's been another mass shooting in America," he began. "This time at a community college in Oregon. That means there are more American families -- moms, dads, children -- whose lives have been changed forever.
The President's exasperation with America's gun problem quickly became evident:
"But as I said just a few months ago -- and I said a few months before that, and I said each time we see these mass shootings -- our thoughts and prayers are not enough. It's not enough. It does not capture the heartache and grief and anger that we should feel, and it does nothing to prevent this carnage from being inflicted some place else in America next week, or a couple of months from now."
Obama's feelings about gun control have been clear for some time now. In 2012, he called the Sandy Hook massacre in Newtown, Connecticut the "worst day" of his presidency, and he has referred to his inability to pass stricter gun control legislation as one of the biggest frustrations of his administration.
His feelings were made clearer still in his speech, as he referenced both the staggering frequency of these events and our country's seeming inability to enact any meaningful change.
"We are the only advanced country on Earth that sees these kinds of mass shootings every few months. Somehow this has become routine. The reporting is routine. My response here at this podium ends up being routine. The conversation and the aftermath of it. We've become numb to this. ... It cannot be this easy for somebody who wants to inflict harm on other people to get his or her hands on a gun. And what's become routine, of course, has been the response of those who oppose any kind of common sense gun regulation."
He also spoke directly to the common argument that more guns save lives --
"Right now I imagine the press release is being cranked out. 'We need more guns,' they'll argue, 'fewer gun safety laws.' Does anybody really believe that?"
-- as well as the misguided aversion to politicizing tragedy:
"And of course what's also routine is that somebody somewhere will comment and say, 'Obama politicized this issue.' Well, this is something we should politicize. ... This is a political choice that we make, to allow this to happen every few months in America. We collectively are answerable to those families, who lose their loved ones because of our inaction."
Ultimately, he called for political and legal action -- which he cannot accomplish alone:
"We're going to have to to change our laws, and this is not something I can do by myself. I've got to have a congress, and I've got to have state legislators and governors who are willing to work with me on this.
He ended with a muted message of hope:
I hope and pray that I don't have to come out again during my tenure as President to offer my condolences to families in these circumstances, but based on my experience as President I can't guarantee that, and that's terrible to say. And it can change.
May God bless the memories of those who were killed today ... May he bring us the strength to come together and find the courage to change."
You can watch the full speech here.