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Thursday, December 13, 2018

‘Never again:’ To ‘demand they listen,’ activists stage rally at NRA headquarters

"We don't want thoughts. We don't want prayers. We want change."

Image Credit: Molly Riley/UPI

Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School are among those taking part in the “National March on the NRA” on Saturday outside the powerful gun lobbying organization’s headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia.

“We will NOT debate the last mass shooting, but do something to try to prevent the next one,” a call-to-action on the organizers’ website declares. “We will demand they listen, this is our movement – this is our country and we are taking it back.”

Sister marches are also taking place in at least 20 cities across the nation.

In addition to calling for the IRS to revoke the group’s tax-exempt status, the organizers’ demands include:

  • Universal, comprehensive background checks;
  • Bringing the ATF into the 21st century with a digitized, searchable database;
  • Stopping access to downloadable gun blueprints online;
  • Calling for Congress to fund the CDC for gun violence prevention research;
  • High-capacity magazine ban; and
  • An assault weapons ban

Saturday also marks what would have been the 18th birthday of Joaquin “Guac” Oliver – one of the 17 people killed in the Parkland, Fla. high school shooting in February.

On a GoFundMe page, Guac’s parents, Manuel and Patricia Oliver, state, “We don’t want thoughts. We don’t want prayers. We want change.” They’re hoping the page will help fund the newly-formed Change The Ref (CTR) advocacy organization “to expose the disastrous effects of the mass shooting pandemic.”

Similar to previous artwork he’s created, Manuel Oliver made a mural of his son at the Fairfax rally, with the words “We demand to blow out our candles” written next to Guac’s face.

 

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