RIVERDALE, Ill. -- The gun control debate continues as gun control advocates protested in front of a suburban gun shop on Saturday.
From the streets to schools to shops, the gun control debate is raging across the country. One flashpoint is the sale of assault rifles like the one used in the massacre in Florida that left 17 dead.
Major retailers like Walmart and Dick's Sporting Goods have said they won't sell guns to customers under 21 and both have restrictions on ammunition sales.
Dick's also ended its sales of military-style semi-automatic rifles. Those weapons are still available for purchase at smaller gun shops just outside of Chicago.
Two dozen protesters picketed Chuck’s Gun Shop in south suburban Riverdale, Ill., calling it a symbol of the problem of gun violence.
“It represents gun shops and gun dealers and gun sellers across this country who are selling military-style assault weapons to ordinary citizens,” Rev. Janette Wilson, Rainbow PUSH Coalition, said.
The owner of the gun shop, and others in the area, declined to comment on the sale of assault-style rifles.
Rev. Wilson led the protest, saying that after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland Fla., it’s time for congress to take up comprehensive gun control.
“We want to close all loopholes that exist in the sale of these weapons to be closed by the appropriate legislation,” she said.
The National Rifle Association remains opposed to nearly any measure that would restrict the Second Amendment, and criticized gun control advocates as having a political agenda.
“They hate the NRA. They hate the Second Amendment. they hate individual freedom,” Wayne Lapierre, executive VP and CEO of the NRA, said.
Illinois legislature passed new gun control measures this week but the bills are waiting for the signature of Governor Bruce Rauner.
'I’m used to violence in the neighborhoods. I’ve been to too many funerals of kids. I’ve been to more kids’ funerals than I have funerals of people my age,” Patricia Parsons, a retired CPS teacher, said.
Parsons, 70, worked as a science teacher at various CPS schools for four decades. She rejected the president`s proposal to arm some trained teachers.
“There’s no way I would want to have a gun in my classroom,” she said.
The protesters are asking people to support sports shops like Dick’s.
Something Mayor Rahm Emanuel himself did on Friday. Hehe bought running shoes at Dick’s specifically because of their gun policy.