Daily Archives: March 12, 2018

Profile in Courage: Rep. Randy Friese Stands Up for Gun Safety

Only one Arizona legislator had the courage to stand up against gun violence: Rep. Randy Friese, a Democrat from Tucson. Watch the 4-minute YouTube video or read the transcript below as he calls for his colleagues to act, just days after the Parkland, FL, mass murders.

Friese had introduced HB2023 to ban bump stocks, but he could not get it heard in the Judiciary and Public Safety Committee where it was assigned. He used procedural motion to bring the measure directly to the House floor for a vote. But Rep. John Allen, a Republican from Scottdale, used a second motion to stop it from being debated.

Every Republican member of the Arizona House voted against gun safety, refusing even to hear the bill against bump stocks.

The GOP legislators are intentionally out of touch with the electorate:

  • 72% of registered voters support a ban on bump stocks.
  • 88% of Americans support universal background checks.
  • 81% think that a person should be at least 21 to buy a gun.
  • 70% endorse a ban on high-capacity magazines.
  • 68% support a ban on assault weapons.

Rep. Friese’s speech on the Arizona House floor is truly a profile in courage.


We are facing an epidemic of gun violence. And this violence is everywhere, unfortunately, it’s in our schools. It’s touching the lives of children. We must act. The country is waiting for us to act. The time is now. We have an obligation to take action, we have a mandate to take action, we have the authority to take action. If we don’t recognize our authority to take action, we are failing. We are failing our country, we are failing our children, we are failing our students.

There are students in Florida today, since the last mass killings in schools, that have shown more leadership and courage than legislators across the country, than people who represent us in DC. I congratulate those young people. I ask us to be responsible to them and what they are asking us to do.

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2018 St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Festival on St. Patrick’s Day

“The 31st Annual Tucson St. Patrick’s Day Parade & Festival takes place on Saturday, March 17, 2018 in Armory Park. The parade begins promptly at 11am, winds through downtown ending at Armory Park. The festival begins at 10am-6pm with a line up of musicians, food and entertainment for the entire family.”

https://www.facebook.com/events/223158564882802/

https://www.tucsonstpatricksday.com/

This annual parade & festival doesn’t always coincide on St. Patrick’s Day (March 17) but in 2018 it does. May the luck of the Irish be with you.

 

Wednesday walkout warmup for the March For Our Lives

As schools around the country brace for student walkouts following the deadly shooting in Parkland, Florida, with the first large-scale coordinated national demonstration planned for this Wednesday when organizers of the Women’s March have called for a 17-minute walkout, one minute for each of the 17 students and staff members killed in Florida, “principals and superintendents are scrambling to perform a delicate balancing act: How to let thousands of students exercise their First Amendment rights while not disrupting school and not pulling administrators into the raging debate over gun control.” Student walkouts over guns pose balancing act for schools:

National demonstrations are also planned for March 24, with a march on Washington, D.C.; and on April 20, the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School massacre in Colorado.

See earlier post, March For Our Lives in Washington, D.C. and around the nation (Updated with additional protests).

Some have taken a hard line, promising to suspend students who walk out, while others are using a softer approach, working with students to set up places on campus where they can remember the victims of the Florida shooting and express their views about school safety and gun control.

Since the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, demonstrations have sprung up on school campuses around the country.

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