Hundreds gather in Phoenix for March For Our Lives rally, demand gun safety

March For Our Lives in Phoenix
Published: Jun. 11, 2022 at 9:02 PM MST|Updated: Jun. 12, 2022 at 12:07 PM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) - Hundreds gathered outside the capitol building in downtown Phoenix Saturday evening to attend the March For Our Lives rally promoting better gun safety. Ella Keisling, a Phoenix sixth-grader, was one of those in attendance. She came to the rally because she said she’s tired. Tired of the mass shootings and tired of living in fear.

“We do monthly lockdowns,” she said. “A teacher will come and pretend to be bad guys. And we have to lock down and find places to hide. It’s just not right.” So there Keisling and countless others stood, holding signs that said in different ways that enough is enough.

“It feels like you can’t really do anything,” Buckeye resident Heather Brogdon said. “So coming out to things like this and trying to have a voice and do something is really important.”

For State Representative Jennifer Longdon, the fight for better gun safety is personal. Eighteen years ago, Longdon was almost killed by gun violence. Ever since, she’s pushed for increased gun safety measures like universal background checks.

“There are things that we can and should do to protect us from gun violence, while also protecting the Second Amendment,” Longdon said. “And that’s the work I’m here to do. We can do it, I’ve been working on it these years, and we’re going to get it done.”

But not everyone in attendance was on board with stricter gun safety measures. Representative Longdon offers a comparison between the U.S., where 41 mass shootings have happened in the three weeks since the Uvalde school shooting, and other countries.

“When you look at other industrialized countries, they don’t experience gun violence at this rate,” she said. “It is about the guns; the guns are the differentiator between what happens here and what happens in those countries.

Longdon is confident things will change for the better. After seeing the turnout at the capitol, Keisling is too. “I think it’ll make sure that all the kids feel much safer in the world and going to school,” she said. “So we don’t have to practice all of these gun violence things.”

For those who were unable to make this march, there are other ways to get involved. Some include financial donations, calling your local politicians, or voting in the upcoming elections.