Thousands flock to National Mall to demand gun law changes – Boston News, Weather, Sports

WASHINGTON (AP) — Thousands of people flocked to the National Mall on Saturday to see the nation’s highest-profile demonstrations that marked a renewed push for gun control following the recent mass shootings Uvalde, Texasto Buffalo, New Yorkactivists say should compel Congress to act.

Organizers hoped the second March for Our Lives rally would draw up to 50,000 people to the Washington Monument. That would be far less than that though Original March 2018 filling downtown Washington with more than 200,000 people, they decided to focus on smaller marches at an estimated 300 locations this time.

Despite the rain in the nation’s capital, well before the rally began, scores of people flocked to the memorial site holding up signs, including one that read, “Children are irreplaceable, but senators are.” Vote.” A middle school-aged girl carried a sign that read, “I want to feel safe in school.”

“We want to make sure this work happens across the country,” said Daud Mumin, co-chair of the march’s board of directors and a recent graduate of Westminster College in Salt Lake City. “This work isn’t just about DC, it’s not just about Senators.”

The first march was inspired by the February 14, 2018, killing of 14 students and three staff members by an alumni at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. This massacre sparked the formation of the youth-led movement March For Our Lives, which successfully pressured the Republican-dominated Florida state government to enact sweeping gun control reforms.

The Parkland students then targeted state and national gun laws, started the March for Our Lives, and held the March 24, 2018 Washington Grand Rally.

The group fell short of Florida’s results nationally, but has since continued to advocate for gun restrictions and participate in voter registration campaigns.

Now, as another spate of mass shootings put gun control back on the national conversation, organizers of this weekend’s events say it’s time to renew their push for a national overhaul.

“We’re angry right now,” said Mariah Cooley, a March For Our Lives board member and a senior at Howard University in Washington. “This will be a demonstration to show that as Americans, we’re not going to stop anytime soon until Congress does its job. And if not, we will vote them out.”

The protest comes at a time of renewed political activity related to guns and a pivotal moment for possible action in Congress.

Survivors of mass shootings and other gun violence incidents lobbied and testified for lawmakers on Capitol Hill this week. was among them Miah Cerrillo, an 11-year-old girl who survived the shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde, Texas. She described to lawmakers how she covered herself in the blood of a dead classmate to avoid being shot.

On Tuesday, Actor Matthew McConaughey performed at the White House briefing room to push for gun legislation and made very personal comments about the violence in his hometown of Uvalde.

The House of Representatives has passed bills that would raise the age limit for purchasing semi-automatic weapons and enact federal “red flag” legislation. But such initiatives have traditionally stalled or been severely watered down in the Senate. Democratic and Republican senators had hoped to reach agreement this week on a framework to address the issue and spoke on Friday, but had not announced an agreement.

Moomin said the goal was to send a message to lawmakers that public opinion on gun control was shifting under their feet. “If they’re not on our side, there will be consequences – voting them out of office and making their life hell once they’re in office,” he said.

(Copyright (c) 2022 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, transcribed, or redistributed.)

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https://whdh.com/news/thousands-stream-to-national-mall-to-demand-gun-law-changes/ Thousands flock to National Mall to demand gun law changes – Boston News, Weather, Sports

Nate Jones

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