Black Leaders React to Shooting Tragedy in Connecticut
Many are renewing calls for gun control
Black leaders seemed to know they couldn’t stay silent after the tragic mass shooting in Newtown, Conn., last week, when 20 schoolchildren and six adults were mowed down by a lone gunman.
While the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting, as tragic as any calculated massacre, occurred in just minutes, many black leaders are all too familiar with the toll guns take in urban communities where gun violence happens daily. Leaders there are all too familiar with the funerals, the calls for stopping the violence and the inaction on the part of national politicians.
Many of them aren’t allowing the Connecticut shooting to pass through the news cycle without renewing their calls for action on gun violence – a call that President Barack Obama seemed to make in his first remarks following the tragedy.
That’s certainly what civil rights activist and MSNBC host Rev. Al Sharpton aimed to do Tuesday night, during a special service for the Connecticut shooting victims at Zion Baptist Church in the neighboring Waterbury, Conn.
Blacks are six times more likely than whites to be victims of violent crime, according to a 2011 U.S. Justice Department study, which also found that 93 percent of black are killed by another black person.
View statements from Sharpton and other black leaders, including President Obama, by clicking through the photo gallery above.