Scroll To Top

Gays Against Guns Take to the Streets After El Paso, Dayton Shootings

Donna Aceto / Gays Against Guns

"Well, Walmart sells guns. Did it help?"

A rainbow flag with the words "Gays Against Guns" unfurled in Times Square as activists chanted "GOP. NRA. How many people did you kill today?"

As the nation still reeled from back-to-back mass shootings at a Walmart in El Paso, Tex., and an entertainment district in Dayton, Ohio, Gays Against Guns rallied for gun control in New York City.

"They say more guns will help," said activist Marti Gould Cummings. "Well, Walmart sells guns. Did it help?"

Gays Against Guns, a group formed in the aftermath of the Pulse shooting in Orlando, has lobbied for gun control through three years of die-ins and protests.

The event also drew speakers from other organizations like Moms Demand Action, and New York Rep. Gerald Nadler also spoke out. The rainbow image of the organization's iconic flag served as a backdrop to the event.

With the nation once again mourning at least 29 more victims of mass shootings, the organization took the streets in the most trafficked intersection in the world.

There, activists stressed it's not just mass fatality events that show the toll of America's gun obsession.

"It's so important we add our voices to the countless number of people who are not only dead by gun violence, but its often underrepresented the number of people injured, maimed and paralyzed," said Eric Adams, Brooklyn borough president for GAG.

He expressed frustration felt throughout Brooklyn about a shooting earlier this month in Brownsville where 11 were injured and one died.

"We cannot merely classify the mass shootings by the location or the ethnicity or the mission of the shooter," Adams said. "Just like El Paso was a mass shooting, so the hell was Brownsville a mass shooting."

Jay Walker, one of the main organizers of the Sunday rally, stressed the importance of visibility, even at the risk of drawing the attention of violent indicuals.

He shared the story of two mothers in Chicago shot dead in Chicago last week, Chantel Grant, 25, and Andrea Stoudemire, while protesting gun violence. Walker called that nothing short of a political assassination.

But he said the story should inspire action, not deter it.

"This is dangerous work that must be done," he said of activism. "We need to stand up to organizations like the NRA and the political power of a party like the GOP. We need to stand up and put out faces, bodies and names on the line, not hide behind an egg and handle on social media sites."

Activists expressed significant frustration with Republican leaders in Washington, regularly invoking the name Moscow Mitch to deride Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell.

Advocate Channel - The Pride StoreOut / Advocate Magazine - Fellow Travelers & Jamie Lee Curtis

From our Sponsors

Most Popular

Latest Stories

Jacob Ogles