What Can Be Done to Prevent Gun Violence?

 What Can Be Done to Prevent Gun Violence?

Even as I write this, there has been another school shooting in Nashville, TN. Three children and three adults have been murdered. Our hearts go out the the families, the community and all those affected by epidemic of gun violence in our society. There must be a way out of this death spiral.

In this episode we will be talking about guns, gun violence and most importantly, gun violence prevention. We are recording this episode on March 8th of 2023 and already, less than 3 months into the year, there have already been more than 100 mass shootings in our country.

Statistics on gun violence seem to only go in one direction, up. For context, here are a few statistics to help us all understand the magnitude of this problem:

Children in the US are 12 times more likely to die from firearms than children in the next 25 industrialized nations combined.

In 2021, gun violence killed 48,830 people in the U.S., a nearly 8% increase from 2020's record-breaking magnitude of firearm deaths. Among those killed by gun violence in 2021, 2,571 were children (aged 0-17) – a 12.7% increase over the previous year.

My guests are The Rev. Deanna Hollas and The Rev. Erik Swanson.

The Rev. Deanna Hollas

The Rev. Deanna Hollas is the Gun Violence Prevention Ministry Coordinator with the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship and a founding member of the Everytown for Gun Safety Interfaith Advisory Council. In her role with the Presbyterian Peace Fellowship, Rev. Hollas empowers and equips individuals and congregations across the Presbyterian Church (USA) denomination to embody Jesus’s call to love God and love neighbor by being informed and active in the prevention of gun violence. She holds a Master of Divinity from Perkins School of Theology as well as a Diploma in the Art of Spiritual Direction from San Francisco Theological Seminary.

 The Rev. Erik Swanson

    The Rev. Erik Swanson has been the pastor at Westhope Presbyterian Church for the last 17 years, transforming it into an active contemplative community.  The mass shooting in Las Vegas spurred Erik to begin working on firearm safety at the local and state levels. He’s worked together with religious leaders from different faith communities to work to end this national tragedy.

The following websites were referenced during this podcast. Be sure to check them out and find out what more you can do to help prevent gun violence:

Presbyterian Peace Fellowship 

Gun Violence Prevention Toolkit

Raw Tools

Moms Demand Action

The Brady Campaign



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