Gun reform rally demands Sen. Toomey support gun safety laws

A gun reform rally was held Tuesday afternoon outside of US Sen. Pat Toomey’s office building in downtown Pittsburgh. Several organizations including Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers, March for Our Lives, Cease Fire PA, Pittsburgh Public School teachers, parents and students came together to demand Toomey support gun safety legislation. “Even though, as Americans, we disagree on many of these points we agree that action is needed. So let’s come together with Sen. Toomey and focus on what we can to get something done to save our kids,” said Parkland shooting survivor and co-founder of March for Our Lives, David Hogg.The rally is in light of recent violence across the city of Pittsburgh and the nation, including the mass shooting in Buffalo and the Uvalde, Texas, school shooting. “The shooter in Buffalo was not a criminal mastermind, the shooter in Texas was not a criminal mastermind,” Hogg said. “These were barely adults, they were 18 and 19-year-olds who waited until they were old enough to buy an AR-15 legally and they did so. Stop arming the bad guys with guns.””People are afraid, people are angry that our children aren’t being protected,” said Nina Esposito-Visgitis, Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers president. “Our teachers do everything they can to protect our kids, our students mean everything to them. But some things can not protect our students unless, the laws are in place.” A spokeswoman from Toomey’s office gave this statement to Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 in regards to the rally Tuesday: “Senator Toomey has repeatedly worked on legislation to keep guns out of the hands of known criminals and the dangerously mentally ill. It is possible to protect Second Amendment rights of law abiding citizens while keeping guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals. The Senator remains committed to achieving this goal, and he is ready and willing to work with anyone on either side of the aisle to accomplish it.” Pennsylvania director for Gun Owners of America, Van Finnell, said they too are looking for action out of Harrisburg.”The number one thing that needs to be done is to give the option for teachers and staff to be armed inside of schools,” Finnell told Pittsburgh’s Action News 4. “There has not been a single mass shooting event anywhere in the country when teachers and staff members are armed.”Cease Fire PA, who was also in attendance at the gun reform rally, advocates for stricter gun laws. “We can compare state by state the ones with stronger gun laws have less gun violence. We need national laws, need state laws in Pennsylvania,” said Josh Fleitman, with Cease Fire PA. “We can respect responsible gun ownership and save lives at the same time.” Finnell said the problem may instead be with the person behind the trigger.”The Buffalo shooting in that supermarket, in that terrible shooting — New York has some of the strictest gun control laws. None of those gun control laws stopped an evil, determined person from getting a firearm and committing a heinous crime,” he said. “These evil people, they look for soft targets. Just like this 18-year-old kid did, he looked for a soft target and he deliberately chose (the Uvalde) school knowing they were not armed.”A nationwide March for Our Lives peace walk is set to happen Saturday, June 11 from 11 am to 12 pm The Pittsburgh walk is set to start at Market Square.

A gun reform rally was held Tuesday afternoon outside of US Sen. Pat Toomey’s office building in downtown Pittsburgh.

Several organizations including Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers, March for Our Lives, Cease Fire PA, Pittsburgh Public School teachers, parents and students came together to demand Toomey support gun safety legislation.

“Even though, as Americans, we disagree on many of these points we agree that action is needed. So let’s come together with Sen. Toomey and focus on what we can to get something done to save our kids,” said Parkland shooting survivor and co-founder of March for Our Lives, David Hogg.

The rally is in light of recent violence across the city of Pittsburgh and the nation, including the mass shooting in Buffalo and the Uvalde, Texas, school shooting.

“The shooter in Buffalo was not a criminal mastermind, the shooter in Texas was not a criminal mastermind,” Hogg said. “These were barely adults, they were 18 and 19-year-olds who waited until they were old enough to buy an AR-15 legally and they did so. Stop arming the bad guys with guns.”

“People are afraid, people are angry that our children aren’t being protected,” said Nina Esposito-Visgitis, Pittsburgh Federation of Teachers president. “Our teachers do everything they can to protect our kids, our students mean everything to them. But some things can not protect our students unless, the laws are in place.”

A spokeswoman from Toomey’s office gave this statement to Pittsburgh’s Action News 4 in regards to the rally Tuesday:

“Senator Toomey has repeatedly worked on legislation to keep guns out of the hands of known criminals and the dangerously mentally ill. It is possible to protect Second Amendment rights of law abiding citizens while keeping guns out of the hands of dangerous individuals. The Senator remains committed to achieving this goal, and he is ready and willing to work with anyone on either side of the aisle to accomplish it.”

This content is imported from Twitter. You may be able to find the same content in another format, or you may be able to find more information, at their web site.

Pennsylvania director for Gun Owners of America, Van Finnell, said they too are looking for action out of Harrisburg.

“The number one thing that needs to be done is to give the option for teachers and staff to be armed inside of schools,” Finnell told Pittsburgh’s Action News 4. “There has not been a single mass shooting event anywhere in the country when teachers and staff members are armed.”

Cease Fire PA, who was also in attendance at the gun reform rally, advocates for stricter gun laws.

“We can compare state by state the ones with stronger gun laws have less gun violence. We need national laws, need state laws in Pennsylvania,” said Josh Fleitman, with Cease Fire PA. “We can respect responsible gun ownership and save lives at the same time.”

Finnell said the problem may instead be with the person behind the trigger.

,The Buffalo shooting in that supermarket, in that terrible shooting — New York has some of the strictest gun control laws. None of those gun control laws stopped an evil, determined person from getting a firearm and committing a heinous crime,” he said. “These evil people, they look for soft targets. Just like this 18-year-old kid did, he looked for a soft target and he deliberately chose (the Uvalde) school knowing they were not armed.”

A nationwide March for Our Lives peace walk is set to happen Saturday, June 11 from 11 am to 12 pm The Pittsburgh walk is set to start at Market Square.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published.