Former NFL player Jack Brewer testified before Congress regarding gun crimes following the Uvalde school mass shooting and said that “paddle and prayer” need to be brought back into public school to end violence.
“Parents have little or no responsibility for the actions of their children. If we are serious about addressing gun violence, we need to first get serious about bringing the paddle and prayer back to our public schools,” Brewer said Thursday.
The House Judiciary Committee held a hearing Thursday morning to examine the tragic Uvalde, Texas elementary school shooting that left 19 students and two teachers dead. The hearing included testimony from a sister of a slain student, Democratic Texas state Sen. Roland Gutierrez, Brewer and others.
Brewer said in his remarks that he “experienced gun violence firsthand” as a teenager, citing a childhood friend who at 14 years old shot a “skinhead in the neck in self-defense after a group tried to break into his house.”
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“I will never forget the trauma I felt from having to serve as a witness in that case. Trauma and fear hardened me. After I was threatened and bullied and harassed by skinheads, I started to carry an illegal pistol at 15 years old,” Brewer said.
“I was a young kid with all the world in front of me. I was a straight-A student, great multi-sport athlete, and even the director of my church choir. If I was caught with that gun in my pocket, I would not be testifying before you today. If I had shot and killed a skinhead or bully back then, I may still be in prison serving a life sentence today.”
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Brewer – a father of four who also runs mentorship and outreach programs for children – said the difference between him and “the hundreds of young black boys who are shooting at each other every week” comes down “to one word: father.”
“The reason I thought twice about ever using that illegal gun I carried in my pocket is because I had a hard-handed daddy at home that would whoop my butt,” he said. “I had a fasting and praying mama at home that taught me to fear my father, which art in heaven. And I had a father in the flesh and the father in the spirit.”
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The former Minnesota Vikings safety told the House committee that research shows 82% of those who commit mass shootings don’t have fathers in their lives.
“Look at what’s happening in our public schools. A lot of our public schools’ kids are reading three and four grade levels below their proficiency. They don’t have dads at home to hold them accountable. And so to say that that doesn’t play into why we have so much gun violence in our streets, makes no sense,” he continued.
“We are morally weak as a nation right now. And I think we’ve put that front and center for the American people to see that we have certain people in our government that do not want to stand up for the Word of God. That is called the Antichrist.”
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