WASHINGTON — After mass shootings in Uvalde, Texas; Buffalo, New York; Parkland, Florida; Newtown, Connecticut; El Paso, Texas, and hundreds of other cities across the United States over the past two decades, protesters gathered in Washington, D.C., and in cities across the country Saturday to demonstrate against gun violence.
With their signs, chants and mere presence, they condemned the drumbeat of mass shootings in the United States and renewed a call — so far, a futile one — for federal legislation to limit access to the military-style weapons that have been used in many in them.
The protests, organized by March for Our Lives, was a reprise of student-sponsored demonstrations that drew hundreds of thousands of people in 2018, after a 19-year-old gunman opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, killing 17 and wounding 17 others.
This time, the demonstration follows one shooting last month in a Buffalo supermarket that left 10 Black people dead and another at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde that resulted in the deaths of 19 schoolchildren and two teachers.
“No more,” David Hogg, a March for Our Lives co-founder and a survivor of the Parkland shooting, said on Twitter. “It’s time Democrats, Republicans, gun owners and non-gun owners come together” and start focusing on what they can agree on.
Protests unfolded Saturday in more than 300 cities across the country and at a smattering of locations in Europe. At the main protest site, the Washington Monument in the U.S. capital, survivors of mass shootings, teachers’ representatives, civil rights advocates and elected officials addressed the crowd.
Bipartisan negotiations on legislation to rein in mass shootings are underway in the Senate, but Republicans who have blocked such laws for years continue to say that the murders are the result of other problems, such as mental illness or flaws in school security, not the weapons themselves. The Senate talks are said to focus on those claims, as well as on background checks for weapons purchases.
This article originally appeared in The New York Times.