Gun Violence

the Web Editors 11-16-2017

People gather to enter a memorial in the Sutherland SpringsFirst Baptist Church where a memorial has been set up to remember those killed there, in a mass shooting in SutherlandSprings, Texas, U.S. November 15, 2017. REUTERS/Jon Herskovitz

Introduced by Sens. John Cornyn (R-TX), Chris Murphy (D-CT), Tim Scott (R-SC), and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT), the bill would galvanize states to ensure records are uploaded and accurate in the National Instant Background Check System (NICS).

Mourners hold signs during a solidarity vigil in memory of victims of Las Vegas' Route 91 Harvest music festival mass killing, in Newtown, Connecticut U.S., the site of the 2012 Sandy Hook school shooting, October 4, 2017. REUTERS/Michelle McLoughlin/File Photo

The families claim Remington and the other defendants "extolled the militaristic and assaultive qualities" of the AR-15, advertising the rifle as "mission-adaptable" and "the ultimate combat weapons system" in a deliberate pitch to a demographic of young men fascinated by the military.

Jamie D. Aten 11-14-2017

Image via Rick Wilking/Reuters.

I’ve dedicated my career to helping churches prepare for disasters, including mass shootings. And I believe that responding to the Texas church mass shooting with an arms race does more to protect fear than it does to protect our churches. Here are three suggestions I want to offer the U.S. church now.


Brandy Jones prays in front of 26 crosses erected near the site of the shooting at the First Baptist Church of Sutherland, Texas, U.S., November 6, 2017. REUTERS/Rick Wilking
 

Our thoughts and prayers are fleeting breath.

If we just dream of what could be

And do not build community,

And do not seek to change our ways,

Our dreams of change are false displays.

the Web Editors 11-08-2017

She called for the end of "the boyfriend loophole," referring to the 20-year-old Lautenberg Act that barred individuals who are married, in a domestic partnership, or have children to own guns. Outside of that realm, domestic abusers are still allowed to own guns. 

Lindsey Paris-Lopez 11-07-2017

Image via Reuters/Jonathan Bachman.

This is the hope of the life that never fades away, the life that extinguishes division and death. It is the life to which love has called us, which we must live out in daily acts of mercy and reconciliation. Rejecting the gun is the least we can do. There is no room in this life for instruments of death.

Joe Kay 10-09-2017

The conversation isn’t just about guns, although that’s certainly a huge part of it. We need to look at the bigger picture of how we’ve made violence our norm, how we endorse and encourage it in so many ways.

Image via Shutterstock.com

While much will hinge on the motives of a white gunman attacking a mostly-white country music crowd, that uncomfortable question also hits at some of America’s most divisive issues: race, religion, and politics.

Image via RNS/AP Photo/John Locher

“My heart goes out to all those impacted by this senseless act of violence. When tragedies like the Las Vegas massacre occur, the political and religious barriers that too often divide us break down and we come together to mourn as Americans. This moment presents all of us with the opportunity to be there for one another as we try to come to terms with what happened yesterday. As our nation mourns, I hope we continue in the spirit of inclusion, as we are all impacted by this terrible tragedy.”

Kathy Kelly 1-03-2017

One of more than 750 crosses carried in a Chicago rally commemorating homicide victims on New Year’s Eve. Photo by Ed Juillard.

It was a year of social service program shutdowns driven by the governor’s office in Springfield. The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King’s description of a triplet of giant evils, each insoluble in isolation from the others, helps us identify an answer to the Tribune’s question. King spoke of the giant triplets of racism, extreme materialism, and militarism. Training for, and the diversion of money to, wars overseas was a crisis inextricable from the race crisis at home, as were policies promoting radical wealth inequality. Rep. Danny Davis of Chicago, whose grandson was killed by gun violence in 2016, insists that “poverty was fueling the city’s bloodshed, and that Chicago needed to make investments ‘to revamp whole communities.’

the Web Editors 12-15-2016

Image via Charleston County Sheriff’s Office

A federal jury found Dylann Roof guilty on all 33 counts of hate crimes, religious obstruction, and firearms violations, reports the Post and Courier. The jury will return Jan 3. to deliberate whether Roof's charges warrant the death penalty or life imprisonment. 

Da'Shawn Mosley 11-02-2016

Image via Debbie Allen's "Freeze Frame - Stop the Madness" Facebook

The project which Allen spoke of, titled Freeze Frame…Stop the Madness, is a work of theatre written, choreographed, and directed by Allen that combines cinema, dance, and music into a stage performance inspired by the issues of race and gun violence in America. Freeze Frame opened at the Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. on Oct. 27 and, on Oct. 24, Allen visited the Center for American Progress, in the nation’s capital, to discuss Freeze Frame’s creation and the impact she hopes the show will have on the U.S.

Image via RNS/Charlie Simokaitis

The Episcopal Diocese of Indianapolis has elected the first black, female diocesan bishop in the history of the Episcopal Church.

The Rev. Jennifer Baskerville-Burrows, director of networking in the Episcopal Diocese of Chicago, was elected on the second ballot, during a diocesan convention held at Christ Church Cathedral Indianapolis on Oct. 28.

Da'Shawn Mosley 9-01-2016

Image via carl ballou/Shutterstock.com

August 2016 was Chicago’s deadliest month since August 1996, reports the Chicago Sun-Times. In Aug. 2016 384 shootings occurred in the city, resulting in 472 shooting victims and 90 fatalities.

According to the Chicago Tribune, the city's police superintendent Eddie Johnson believes the mass distribution of guns in the city shoulders some of the blame for the new startling statistics.

Karen E. Park 7-21-2016
Man carries his sidearm to support the permitless carry law going into effect on July 1.

Man carries his sidearm to support the permitless carry law going into effect on July 1. txking / Shutterstock.com

Gun violence has become so ubiquitous in the U.S. that it is changing the very way we talk about our country. The names of our cities and towns have become shorthand terms for gun death: Orlando, Newtown, Dallas, Ferguson, Baton Rouge, Columbine, Aurora.

Image via REUTERS / Carlo Allegri / RNS

Dallas clergy, reeling from the shootings of police in their city and the recent shootings of black men by police elsewhere, say they will start responding with prayer and then move to advocating for concrete societal changes in the aftermath of the tragedies.

“Faith leaders now have a responsibility to say we’re going to pray with our feet until real structural change happens in this country,” said the Rev. Frederick Haynes, pastor of Friendship-West Baptist Church in Dallas.

the Web Editors 6-22-2016

Screenshot via RepJohnLewis / Youtube.com

Coming on the heels of a filibuster in the Senate, House Democrats are staging their own act of political theater in a push for legislation on gun violence.

Led by Civil Rights icon Rep. John Lewis (D-Ga.), a group of Democrats are holding a sit-in on the floor of the House. 

the Web Editors 6-22-2016

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. Image via Gage Skidmore / Wikimedia.org

After a filibuster and four failed bills trying to deal with gun violence, the Senate may have found a way forward, reports The Hill.

Senate Republicans, led by Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), plan to bring forward a bipartisan bill that would block people on two different terrorist watch lists from buying guns.

Elizabeth M. Edman 6-21-2016

Image via REUTERS/Elijah Nouvelage/RNS

As our country asks how to protect itself from the terror of more mass shootings, elected leaders who call themselves Christian might look to the LGBTQ community for inspiration. Queer people have a weapon in our arsenal that no gun will ever defeat.

We dance.

the Web Editors 6-20-2016

Image via Eric B. Walker / flickr.com

The Senate is set to begin voting on four gun control bills this evening, due largely to Sen. Chris Murphy’s (D-Conn.) filibuster begun June 15 and carried into the early morning the next day.

After one of the worst mass shootings in U.S. history, Murphy said he’d had enough.

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