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Auburn has seen three incidents of gun violence in less than a week.

Last Thursday, a child took a gun to the junior high. Last Friday, a police officer was shot by an armed robbery suspect. And last Monday, a man flashed a pistol at a coffee shop while shouting Nazi slogans.

Auburn and Opelika have seen 157 incidents of gun violence since March 2014, including 59 deaths and two mass shootings. Alabama ranks second in the nation for gun death, with 22.9 deaths in 2017 per 100,000 residents, a 7.06 percent increase from 2016.

Meanwhile, only Congresswoman Terri Sewell has co-sponsored the bipartisan HR8, which would require a background check on every sale. Senator Gerald Allen has pre-filed SB4, which would rescind our state’s requirement that those who carry concealed, loaded handguns must have a permit. Lt. Governor Will Ainsworth sees arming teachers as the solution to guns in our schools. Responsible gun storage and the ability to raise red flags will make our schools safer. Arming teachers will increase the risk for unintentional shootings and escalation of tense interactions into deadly ones.

On April 10, volunteers with Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America will go to the statehouse to talk to lawmakers about the broad support in Alabama for concealed carry permits and background checks. To join us in Montgomery or to learn more, visit momsdemandaction.org/take-action or text JOIN to 644-33.

Harriette Huggins

Auburn, Alabama

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