Pittsburgh Friends Meeting supports slowing gun violence

Draft Minute on Gun Violence
The Pittsburgh Monthly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (the Quakers), urge for strong national legislative action to curb gun violence.
Quakers throughout history have stood on the side of peace and nonviolence. Just as we believe that “war is not the answer” as a way of settling international disputes, we also believe that “guns are not the answer” for settling disputes of any kind or for providing personal safety.
The present epidemic of gun violence has deep roots involving many social issues: mental health, culture, social inequalities, poverty and more. These issues must be addressed. Peaceful conflict resolution is a sober process of distinguishing the positions people take from their real interests. It requires wisdom and patience to see common ground amidst apparently irreconcilable positions.
Violence is not only about guns, and gun violence is not only about mass killings. However the first step toward a commitment to peace, to an end to violence, is addressing the proliferation of guns in our society.
This seems like a tall order. Yet, Great Britain, Australia, Canada, and other countries with which we have a close kinship have
accomplished impressive reductions in gun violence through strong gun‐control measures.
We ask that every political and faith leader go on record, now, and lend their voice to urgent effective action to reduce gun violence and insure that current and future generations may live and learn in our country free from the threat of gun violence.
The courage to do so will lead to a significant reduction in the terrible loss of human life and lack of public safety that our country, alone among developed nations, currently endures.
Do not remain silent.
submitted by Robert Bowman


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