WASHINGTON — Hundreds of North Shore moms, many of whom attended the Highland Park Fourth of July Parade, staged a rally at the U.S Capitol in Washington on Wednesday, demanding lawmakers enact a ban on assault weapons like the one used by the parade gunman.
A group of mostly mothers, outraged by what they say is inadequate action from Congress on gun safety, took a single message to lawmakers on Capitol hill.
‘Enough is enough.’
There was a federal assault weapons ban in place from 1994 to 2004. During that decade — according to one study — mass shootings decreased by 70%.
“That just goes to show that mass shootings have gone up significantly since there was no longer a federal ban,” rally-goer Emily Grzelakowsi said.
“There’s a common ground here and that’s no one should be killed,” added Taylor Clearfield.
Among the motivated moms was a devasted father, who lost his 9-year-old daughter, Jackie Cazares, to a mass shooting in Uvalde, Texas.
“Typical 9-year-old girl with lots of love and energy. Loved to sing and dance. Gymnastics. You know she had a really big heart. She was always giving to others,” said Javier Cazares.
An owner of a semi-automatic rifle, he too, now wants to see the assault weapon banned. The grieving father told WGN News he stands with the Highland Park moms as accidental activists but determined parents pushing to make a difference.
“I own one, and I feel different about it now (with) what happened to my daughter,” Cazares said. “We do have a right to protect ourselves, but there are many other easy ways to do that.”)