Celebrities and activists are demanding action after mass shootings in El Paso and Dayton
The list of mass shootings in America continues to grow with no end in sight, despite activists’ repeated calls to pass gun control legislation. Recently, two more mass shootings took place, reigniting debates about how to stop gun violence and how to tackle white nationalism.
On August 3rd, a gunman opened fire in an El Paso, Texas, Walmart, killing at least 20 people, according to CNN. The news outlet reports that local authorities believe the shooter wrote a racist, anti-immigrant manifesto, which contained several white nationalist talking points. The next day, August 4th, a man killed nine people—including his younger sister—in a Dayton, Ohio, shooting, per The New York Times. It is unclear what motivated the Dayton shooter. According to the Times, the gunman used an “assault-style rifle” in the attack, which he obtained legally.
These tragedies left many Americans shocked and heartbroken. Several celebrities and activists renewed their calls for gun control reform.
Gun control activist and Parkland shooting survivor David Hogg called for Congress to stage an emergency session.
Actress Mia Farrow pointed out that blaming mass shootings on things like video games misses the big picture.
John Legend made a plea for Congress to both enact gun control and address the threat of white nationalism.
Lili Reinhart asked “Who has to die for laws to change?”
Lizzo, who has family in Dayton, tweeted that she felt “helpless” and urged her followers to vote.
Comedian Aparna Nancherla succinctly summed up the problem with “thoughts and prayers.”
Many expressed anger at Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell because, as USA Today notes, he has prevented the Senate from voting on bipartisan legislation requiring background checks for gun sales.
It’s hard not to feel hopeless after tragedies like these, but there are some things you can do to help stop mass shootings—even if they seem small. Consider donating to organizations like Everytown for Gun Safety, and be sure to call your elected officials and demand that they take action. Our hearts are broken for Dayton and El Paso, but we need to keep fighting for change.