President Trump's motorcade arrives at University Medical Center of Southern Nevada in Las Vegas, theUnited States, on Oct. 4, 2017. U.S. President Donald Trump and first lady Melania Trump traveled to Las Vegas on Wednesday to show their support for the victims of Sunday's shooting massacre. (Xinhua/Wang Ying)
by Peter Mertz
LAS VEGAS, the United States, Oct. 4 (Xinhua) -- U.S. President Donald Trump's four-hour trip to Las Vegas Wednesday, while well received by some, added fuel to the conversation over gun control.
"It's unfortunate the president failed to mention the most important aspect of the horrific Las Vegas massacre - that responsible gun control laws could actually stop the carnage," said Seattle attorney and Washington-DC insider David Richardson.
Advocates of gun control were active on the social media. "I'm angry that somebody died because the Republicans, with their leader, are very good at going to gun violence memorials, but not very good at preventing them," Juan Zepeda wrote on the Los Angeles Times website.
"Listening to him is painful," Carol Crommett posted on the Boston Globe website.
Some took the chance to vent their rages at the country's racial problems. "He probably won't even mention that the security guard who helped prevent more shootings was Hispanic!" Joanne Cordero, a physical therapist from Brooklyn, posted on the New York Daily News website.
However, Richardson told Xinhua that Trump may see his approving rate rise after the incident. "You can expect Trump's ratings to rise after this unspeakable tragedy," Richardson said, "Americans tend to pull together when the chips are down."
According to a Politico/Morning Consult poll conducted over last weekend, the president's approval rating was 45 percent, compared to 49 percent who said they viewed him negatively.
On the ground in Las Vegas, the president received good marks from first responders, victims, and hospital staff who met him Wednesday.
"It was a great honor to meet the president - he came in, cracked a joke, said he was very proud of us, and that the world was watching," said Steve Grammas, President of the Las Vegas Police Protective Association.
Grammas also defended Trump's three-day delay getting to the Nevada desert to offer support.
"Bringing him here early may have caused problems," Grammas told Xinhua.
"We were still dealing with a lot down here - getting some officers rest, and getting things back to normalcy - so his early arrival may have hurt that," Grammas said.
Judd Frazier, a Las Vegas hospital staffer told Xinhua, "I think it's great that he came and visited the people here, they need that, they need the support, and the country needs to unify."
Nevada state trooper Jeremy Tye told Xinhua, "It means a lot to us to have the president here ... It was great."
Victim Thomas Gunderson, who was shot in the leg, put a short video on Facebook showing President Trump and Fist Lady Melania stopping by the hospital he was in.
"There may be plenty of issues in this country but I will always respect my country, my president, and my flag," Gunderson wrote.
Stephen Paddock, a 64-year-old gambler and real estate investor, rained bullets from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino on the Las Vegas Strip onto an outdoor music festival with more than 22,000 concert-goers late Sunday night.
At least 59 people were killed and more than 500 others wounded in the deadliest shooting in U.S. history.