The Rev. Franklin Graham has written an open letter to Barack Obama charging that the President's recent moves to tighten gun controls "will do nothing to change this horrific problem," as the true issue in this country is sin.
"Mr. President, you're looking at the wrong place when it comes to the root cause of gun violence," Graham, head of both the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and the Samaritan's Purse global charity, said in a Facebook post shared Wednesday. "You can take all the guns in America and put them in a pile on the Mall in Washington D.C. - and those guns will stay there and will eventually rust and decay.
"Not one gun will crawl out of that pile and shoot or harm anyone," the 64-year-old evangelist continued. "It takes a human being, and a human heart bent on evil, to pick up a gun, load it, and pull the trigger. The problem we have in this country is sin."
On Tuesday, the president announced measures to tighten federal background checks for gun sales, require gun sellers to be licensed or face criminal prosecution, and to expand mental health treatment. During his announcement, Obama said that, in order to protect innocent people, some "constraints on freedom" are acceptable.
In continuing his comments, Graham argued that the real problem in America is that "we have a government that has taken God out of society. Our Founding Fathers certainly did not intend this to happen."
He added that sadly, Hollywood continues to glamorize gun violence in films and television -- and Obama's proposals will "do nothing to stop this."
"Every night, the networks, movie channels, and theaters are filled with programming that glamorizes gun violence - guns are used to shoot, to kill, and to splatter human blood all over screens across America," he writes.
The evangelist called for legislation to reduce such media violence, proposing "a heavy tax on the manufacturers of any film or game that graphically depicts violence.
"If violent films and games were taken off the shelves, I believe we would see a dramatic drop in gun violence over the next few years.
"As a nation, we have turned our back on God and this kind of violence and bloodshed is a result," Graham said, quoting Jeremiah 17:9, which reads, "The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately wicked: who can know it?"
He concluded: "The only cure? Jesus Christ. That's what will make a difference in our nation."
As reported by the Gospel Herald, Graham is bringing the "Decision America Tour 2016" tour to all 50 state capitals and holding prayer rallies to encourage Christians to vote in the upcoming presidential election.
"We need to get Christians to run for office. We need Christians to vote for politicians that stand for Biblical principles and Biblical truth," Graham recently told NBC News.
He later told audiences at the first rally in Des Moines, Iowa: "We're in trouble spiritually, racially...economically, [and] politically," and that, "My only hope is in God Almighty and His Son Jesus. The most important thing we can do is pray."
More information about the pledge can be found at DecisionAmericaTour.com.