© NOTICE: Please do not download these photos and re-post to social media. All images from this published editorial feature can be found on the Milwaukee Independent Facebook Page. Those versions of these pictures are identical, but have been © watermarked for attribution and can be shared on social media. Direct Link to FB Album

“Guns don’t kіІІ people, that’s the NRA’s job” and “I used to be a fetus, now will you care about my life?”

– Signs held by children at “March for Our Lives” rally

Organizers of the “March for Our Lives” rally in Milwaukee shared the three points that the national movement released in their petition to Congress. They support the right of law-abiding Americans to keep and bear arms, as set forth in the United States Constitution. But they they emphasized that with that right comes responsibility. The youth of Milwaukee joined on March 24 to call on all the adults in Congress elected to represent the nation, to pass legislation that will protect and save children from gun violence. They demanded that the children be able to attend school without the fear that each day could be their last.

  1. Passing a law to ban the sale of assault weapons like the ones used in Las Vegas, Orlando, Sutherland Springs, Aurora, Sandy Hook and, most recently, to kіІІ 17 innocent people and injure more than a dozen others at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
  2. Prohibiting the sale of high-capacity magazines such as the ones the shooter at our school—and so many other recent mass shootings used.
  3. Closing the loophole in our background check law that allows dangerous people who shouldn’t be allowed to purchase firearms to slip through the cracks and buy guns online or at gun shows.

Of the ten deadliest shootings over the last decade, seven involved the use of assault weapons. No civilian should be able to access these weapons of war, which should be restricted for use by our military and law enforcement only. These guns have no other purpose than to fire as many bullets as possible and indiscriminately kіІІ anything they are pointed at with terrifying speed.

States that ban high-capacity magazines have half as many shootings involving three or more victims as states that allow them. Limiting the number of bullets a gun can discharge at one time will at least force any shooter to stop and reload, giving children a chance to escape.

When Connecticut passed a law requiring background checks on all handgun sales, they saw a 40% reduction in gun homicides. 97% of Americans support closing the current loopholes in our background check system. 22% of gun sales in this country take place without a background check. That’s millions of guns that could be falling into dangerous hands. A background check should be required on every gun sale, no exceptions.

These photos present the feelings and opinions of the participants in the March 24 March for Our Lives in Milwaukee, as the crowd comprised of thousands of families marched from the Milwaukee County Courthouse to Milwaukee City Hall.

“Gun violence here at home disproportionally affect the Black community the most. Students in Milwaukee country are three-times more likely to die because of gun violence. In 2017, the majority of victims of gun violence were Black males between the age of 18-29. For years Black people have been calling for the freedom to thrive in their communities, without the fear gun violence, with little to no action being taken. We need to march. We need to demand. We need to act. I hope that the value of life outweighs political parties and special interest groups. I hope that the question of ‘Am I next?’ stops harassing us as we enter our schools.”

– Bria Smith, a Franklin High School junior and advocate for gun safety

“Blessing of those Marching for Our Lives. They are witnesses to the truth that our children deserve to learn without fear, and that weapons of war have no place in our communities. May all who gather in Washington, D.C. and all over our country, be a sign that precious in your sight is the death of your servants (Psalm 116:13). May all who march from this diocese be under your care and upheld by our prayers.”

– The Episcopal Diocese of Milwaukee