Empire State Building Shines Orange for Gun Control
The Empire State Building was ceremoniously lit orange on Friday night in solidarity with thousands of anti-gun protesters across the country.
The ultra-liberal city of New York illuminated the iconic building to commemorate the third annual National Gun Violence Awareness Day and usher in National Gun Violence Awareness Month.
The color orange was inspired by the #WearOrange campaign, a coalition of gun control advocacy groups and elected officials who ask participants to observe National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 1 by posting orange on social media, wearing orange clothes and attending pro-gun control events throughout the U.S.
Advocates, including director Spike Lee, gathered to flip the light switch on the eve of Gun Violence Awareness Day, which falls on June 2.
“This is a very important moment in American history, and people standing up all across this great country and saying, ‘Enough is enough,’” said Lee at a press conference.
Lee is a member of the Everytown Creative Council, a group of celebrities who advocate for greater gun control and safety measures.
“Ninety-one Americans die every day in this country — two-thirds of those by suicide — and that’s not acceptable. We’re gonna keep getting the word out, making a bigger movement day by day,” Lee said, according to Newsweek. “I think we should also remember all the people no longer with us because of gun violence.”
— Lee Goldberg (@LeeGoldbergABC7) June 2, 2018
Wear Orange campaign began in 2015 when Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old girl who performed at former President Barack Obama’s second inaugural parade in 2013, was shot and killed in Chicago a week later. Her friends wanted to honor her legacy during her birth month of June by wearing orange, which hunters wear to protect themselves in the woods.
Hadiya Pendleton was only 15 years old when she was shot and killed outside her school in Chicago. I #WearOrange today for Hadiya, for the 96 Americans who die every day from gun violence, and most importantly, to imagine a nation where we don’t accept this as normal. pic.twitter.com/kBs4UWKaOd
— Gabrielle Giffords (@GabbyGiffords) June 1, 2018
Despite having some of the strictest firearms laws in the country, Chicago continues to be plagued by gun violence. The city saw more than 2,700 shooting incidents in 2017 alone.
Light all the buildings in Chicago too while you're at it. Very strict gun control = more gun deaths.
— Chris Collins (@ChrisCo69723162) June 2, 2018
Over the last 20 years, the perpetrators of nearly all the deadliest mass shooting in the United States have shared one of two traits: Besides killing innocents with firearms, they either were Muslims or were using mind-altering psychiatric drugs.