04/15/2013 08:24 am ET

Bill Clinton's Stirring 1993 Gun Speech Will Make You Disappointed In How Little Has Changed (VIDEO)

More than 19 years before the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School took the lives of twenty schoolchildren and six adults, Bill Clinton gave an impassioned plea to turn the trend of gun violence around before it got any worse.

In November 1993, then-President Clinton spoke at Mason Temple Church in Memphis, Tenn., where Martin Luther King Jr. gave his last sermon before his 1968 assassination. In his speech, Clinton highlighted the progress the country had made in the years since King's death, but focused on the challenges that still lied ahead -- particularly, the growing toll of gun violence in the United States.

"The freedom to do that kind of thing is not what Martin Luther King lived and died for, not what people gathered in this hallowed church for the night before he was assassinated in April of 1968," Clinton said. "If you had told anybody who was here in that church on that night that we would abuse our freedom in that way, they would have found it hard to believe. And I tell you, it is our moral duty to turn it around."

Watch Clinton's speech above.



Shootings In America