Biden Pushes Gun Reform While Honoring 2023 Teacher Of The Year

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Diana Glebova White House Correspondent
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President Joe Biden called on Congress to pass gun reform measures Monday while presenting the 2023 Teacher of the Year award, saying teaching “shouldn’t be a life-threatening profession.”

“Did you ever think you would be teaching kids how to duck and cover?” Biden said. “We used to do that 100 years ago when I was in school, because of the concern about nuclear war. But now it’s about [sic] concern about guns.”

“Educators should not need to be armed to feel safe in the classroom,” he added.

The president made the remarks after honoring Rebecka Peterson as 2023 National Teacher of the Year. Peterson teaches mathematics at Union High School in Oklahoma, and has inspired students to think positively through her “One Good Thing” blog.

In his speech, Biden called on Congress to pass more gun reform laws, a stance he repeated particularly after mass shootings. The president has advocated for banning “assault weapons,” passing universal background checks and eliminating gun manufacturing immunity from liability. (RELATED: Biden Issues Executive Order Increasing Background Checks On Firearms)

In March, Biden passed an executive order aiming to increase the number of background checks needed before purchasing a firearm and increasing the knowledge around “red flag” laws.

Biden also said schools should be a place where students can be “safe to be themselves.” The president has said LGBT students are “under attack” by Republican policies. Republican lawmakers have pushed for legislation to ban biological men from competing in female sports and prohibit students from secretly changing their pronouns without their parents’ knowledge.

He criticized efforts to ban some books from school libraries, saying, “I never thought I’d be a president who is fighting against elected officials trying to ban and banning books.”

Parents across the country and Republican lawmakers have advocated for schools to ban books depicting pornographic images.

“I’ve never met a parent who wants a politician dictating what their kid can learn,” Biden added.