This past weekend, two mass shootings occurred across our nation. On Saturday evening, a shooter opened fire on a crowd during the 56th Annual Old Timers Day in Brownsville, Brooklyn killing one and injuring 11 others. On Sunday afternoon, a shooter fired into a crowd of families at the Gilroy Garlic Festival in Northern California— killing three, including a 6-year-old boy and a 13-year-old girl, and injuring more than 15.
California and New York have some of the strongest gun safety laws in the nation, and correspondingly low death rates. However, because they are bordered by states with much weaker gun safety laws, the protections in place for their citizens are undermined—a fact that seems to have been one reason these mass shooting incidents were possible.
As we struggle to face yet another violent incident in our nation, let us look to our partner, Giffords, for information on how these shootings are still possible in our nation, and what we can do to change that.
A dedicated public servant for more than 15 years, Gabby Gifford was shot on January 8th, 2011 while meeting with constituents in her hometown of Tucson, Arizona. After the tragic mass shooting at Sandy Hook in December 2012 that took the lives of twenty children and six adults, Gabby and her husband, Navy combat veteran and retired NASA astronaut Captain Mark Kelly, gun owners themselves, founded Americans for Responsible Solutions to fight the gun violence epidemic.
The organization quickly grew to be a leader in the movement to reduce gun violence and joined forces with the Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence in 2016, launching the organization known as Giffords.
Giffords focusing on three efforts:
- Shifting Culture – the organization works to inform Americans on gun violence issues and how we can all make the future of this nation safer
- Changing Policy – researching, writing, and proposing policies that make Americans safer from gun violence and mobilizing voters, advocates, and lawmakers is a key mission of the organization
- Challenging Injustice – Giffords holds accountable the gun lobby and any special interests who seek to profit at the expense of public safety
Since 2013, Giffords has helped pass more than 290 new gun safety laws in 45 states and Washington DC. During the 2018 midterm elections, 256 candidates endorsed by Giffords in 34 states won! Giffords believes that by enacting good policies and supporting politicians ready to turn those policies into action will produce a safer America.
WOVEN agrees with Giffords that gun deaths are preventable and is proud to support this organization in their mission to end gun violence. As more of us join together in opposition to violence, our goal of a peaceful world grows closer.