LETTER: Masses of marchers inspired the anti-gun violence cause

Letter writer Ann Schmidt and her husband Peter at the Milwaukee march against gun violence.

To Ozaukee Press:

To say that Saturday, March 24 was a profound experience would be to understate the impact this will have on me the rest of my life. My husband Peter and I participated in the Milwaukee March for Our Lives, a national and international march for solidarity against gun violence in our country.

The march was also about getting the attention of our elected officials who are choosing to ignore the roughly 70% of people in America who are united against use of the AR-15 type assault weapon by civilians. This deadly rifle has been used by mass murderers to destroy too many lives of children and others who did not deserve to die.

I watched in awe as wave after wave or marchers came down State Street from the courthouse to City Hall. Chants of “no more” echoed from Red Arrow Park, site of presentations by eloquent, passionate 17-year-olds and others. Little children, people in wheelchairs, the masses kept coming in droves. 

This should not be a partisan issue, nor one for gun rights advocates to hide behind. The Second Amendment was never intended to be used as a shield or a bully pulpit.

I spoke to a gun owner who was quietly advocating for the Second Amendment but from a reasoned, sensible position. I asked him what he thought of the AR-15 and he said in no uncertain terms that it had no place among civilians. He has put his own AR-15 away and said he will never use it again.

The worldwide response has been fantastic. Other countries held huge marches and are watching us and waiting for some sign from our politicians that changes will be made. No, arming teachers is not the answer.

I don’t have all the answers. But I can say for sure that the right questions are being asked by our young people, and they won’t stop until they get better answers. I loved the following from one of the Washington march leaders: “Your Second Amendment rights do not trump my right to live.”

Ann Schmidt

Town of Saukville


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Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

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