More than 450 protests were held across the United States on Saturday to persuade American lawmakers to play their role in ending gun violence.

The largest rally was held in the US capital where thousands of protesters gather near the Washington Monument, calling for tighter firearms laws. The protests followed two recent mass shootings in Uvalde, Texas and Buffalo, New York. Nineteen elementary school students and two teachers were killed in the May 24 shooting in Uvalde while 10 were killed in the May 14 supermarket shooting in Buffalo.

Speakers at the Washington rally said that at least 11 shootings have been reported from across the US since Uvalde, killing eight people and injuring 45.

The speakers also said that Republican politicians have repeatedly blocked attempts to introduce tighter gun control to please the National Rifle Association (NRA).

The organisers said that hundreds of thousands of people participated in these rallies – held in more than 450 small towns and large cities across the nation.

Washington, DC, Mayor Muriel Bowser called for common sense gun laws, including mandatory background checks and a ban on assault rifles. “We don’t have to live like this,” she said. “People in other countries don’t live like this.”

Congresswoman Cori Bush, a Democrat, told the audience how guns were impacting family lives as well. She said she once was involved in an abusive relationship in which her partner shot at her multiple times. “That moment when gun violence strikes is so dramatic and so preventable,” she said. “I didn’t know when he would stop.”

“Enough is enough,” said one of the posters the protesters carried at the Washington rally. “Senators, do your job. Protect our lives from Gun,” declared another. Hundreds of protesters wore shirts with the protests theme: March for Our Lives.

The organisers urged the Biden administration to develop a national, comprehensive plan, using executive action and funding, to combat the increasing prevalence of gun violence in America.

They asked President Joe Biden to appoint a Director of Gun Violence Prevention and act on his campaign promise to dedicate approximately $1 billion to fund evidence-based community intervention programming to tackle urban gun violence in 40 cities across the country in his first 100 days.


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