Protesters demanding gun legislation march from Hell's Kitchen to Times Square

Protesters demanding gun legislation march from Hell’s Kitchen to Times Square

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NEW YORK — People in the Tri-State Area and across the country rallied Thursday for the children and adults murdered in the Texas elementary school shooting.

Their goal was to pressure lawmakers to respond to the latest round of violence with stricter gun legislation, CBS2’s Ali Bauman reported.

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Demonstrators she spoke to said it’s tempting to just become numb to mass shootings, when you see a cycle of tragedy after tragedy without change. But the students and adults that marched from Hell’s Kitchen to Times Square said they feel they cannot give up until they see meaningful action to address gun violence.

Veiled in white and carrying photos of the 21 children and adults killed in Uvalde, Texas, protesters marched through Midtown. Each person wearing white represented a victim of gun violence. They said they believe seeing that standing in front of you makes it harder to turn a blind eye.

“We feel it’s an important aspect of our group because you get a very strong visual sense of what it means to have 21 fewer people on the planet,” said Kevin Hertzog, founder of the group Gays Against Guns, which was founded right after the Pulse nightclub shooting in Orlando, Florida, six years ago.

Dozens came out for Thursday’s rally in Times Square.

“It’s important for people to get out there and protest and let their voices be heard because it’s too easy for everything to be ignored,” group member Jay W. Walker said.

“We know on both sides of the aisle, politically, work isn’t getting done. Historically, if we gather together here we can try to make some change,” Harlem resident Lisa Kelley said.

“I don’t see any argument for wanting more dead people. I just don’t understand it. I can’t imagine that something that I would think of as freedom would be more important than some 10-year-old kid in Texas,” Hertzog added.  

Some Brooklyn high school students said they joined the demonstrations because they want to feel safe at school.

“We’re tired of guns. We’re done. I’m tired of seeing news of people dying from my community or little kids just dying going to school,” Michael Sylvester said.

The group Students Demand Action staged walkouts from schools in Wisconsin to Washington D.C. Teens in New Jersey did the same, leaving school and marching in Maplewood and Ridgewood.

“We want universal background checks. We want emergency risk protection orders, which allow judges to remove guns for temporary periods of time from at-risk individuals,” student John Fishkin said.

Teenagers said despite the fact that many of them cannot yet vote, they want their voices to be heard.



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