On Saturday, a gunman fueled with hatred opened fire on worshippers at the Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. A toxic mix of anti-Semitism and easy access to high powered weaponry left 11 men and women dead and six others wounded. The wounded included four police officers who responded to the shooting. Pittsburgh and the nation are now mourning this senseless loss of life. This news comes right after a shooting last Wednesday in Jeffersontown, Kentucky, where a white man filled with racist hatred shot and killed two African Americans in a grocery store. The question many are now asking is, what, if anything, can be done to heal our country?
Ariel Zwang, Safe Horizon CEO, reflects: “Now more than ever, Safe Horizon calls for an end to the harmful words that cause fear of racial, ethnic and religious minorities. This includes the need for all Americans, regardless of political views, to call out and condemn those who embrace anti-Semitism and racism, in whatever form it takes. We once again urge lawmakers in Washington to pass common-sense gun safety laws that keep dangerous weapons off of our streets. Especially semi-automatic assault rifles that can cause the greatest amount of harm in the shortest amount of time. Congress must act now to keep our families and communities safe from gun violence.”
“Author and criminal justice reformer Bryan Stevenson writes ‘hopelessness is the enemy of justice.’ Even as we mourn the tragic and senseless loss of life in Pittsburgh and Kentucky, we must remain hopeful that our best days are ahead. Safe Horizon urges all Americans to embrace our diversity and shared humanity, and to work together to build safe, stronger communities.”
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