Powerful stuff from the grassroots group.
From a news release:
On Saturday, August 27, at 3:30pm, one hundred members of Gays Against Guns (GAG), a new direct-action group targeting the gun industry and lobby, will march from the MLK Jr. Memorial on the Mall to the Lincoln Memorial to tell thousands of visiting tourists that THE GUN BUSINESS IS KILLING AMERICA.
The group will carry signs and distribute thousands of flyers listing congressional incumbents nationwide backed by the National Rifle Association--and urging tourists to go home and campaign and vote against them.
"Even as mass shootings become more frequent in the U.S., investment and sales in assault weapons and high-capacity magazines rise," said John Grauwiler, cofounder of GAG-NY.
"That's not an accident," he continued. "It's the handiwork of the gun industry's Chain of Death, which encompasses investors like BlackRock and Cerberus; manufacturers like Smith & Wesson and Sturm, Ruger; retailers like Cabela's; their lobby puppets like the NRA and the National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF) and their puppets in Congress, many of whom are facing shaky races in November.
Continued Grauwiler, "We're on the Mall Saturday to tell tourists about the amoral profiteers who are both stoking and benefiting from America's mass-shooting problem. It has to stop."
Part of the GAG action will be dozens of silent, solemn white-veiled figures carrying placards with the names and faces of those who've died in mass shootings such as those in Aurora, Colorado; Newtown, Connecticut; Charleston, South Carolina; and Orlando, Florida.
The veiled figures have been integral to GAG since the group debuted 800-strong at NYC's LGBT Pride March in June, just days after the June 12 mass shooting at the LGBT Pulse club in Orlando that took 49 lives and sparked the first GAG meeting.
"We have to stop this chain of death," said GAG-DC cofounder Phil Attey. "We want Americans to know that these aren't just random tragedies. They're enabled by the weakest gun laws in the western world and that's just how the gun business, the NRA and their lackeys in Congress want it.
"They turn every one of these massacres into more fear propaganda and more profits for themselves," Attey continued. "They don't even care about the safety of the average small-time gun owner or they wouldn't have blocked safety devices on guns. Their grip on Congress must be broken this November."
Earlier in the day, at 12pm, GAG will be gathering in DC's Folger Park with hundreds of members of the American Federation of Teachers, the Rev. Al Sharpton's National Action Network and dozens of other groups for a march to the nearby NRA lobby headquarters at the 400 block of 1st St. SE.
This unprecedented coalition will protest the gun lobby's grip in Congress that ensures easy availability of lethal weapons. The march and rally will take place on the 53rd anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s "I Have a Dream" speech.
"There must be dramatically fewer guns in dramatically fewer hands if we're going to reverse America's shameful trend of mass shootings," said Mari Gustafson, a straight-ally member of GAG-NY. "And that starts with exposing the fact that the gun indsustry and lobby care more about profits than lives. We'll be bringing that message to the Mall Saturday loud and clear."
Saturday's action is part of an ongoing GAG campaign to expose gun profiteers, from a just-launched campaign to get investor BlackRock to sell its stocks in gunmakers to a silent protest of the NRA booth at the New Jersey State Fair to a demonstration outside an NSSF (gun lobby) conference in D.C. Only two months after its launch, the group has chapters in NYC, D.C., Los Angeles, Massachusetts and New Jersey, with half a dozen chapters forming elsewhere.