Podcast: As Gun Violence Rocks US, March for Our Lives Calls for Action

podcast a view from the left side

Season 2, Episode 9 of a View from the Left Side focuses on our country’s epidemic of gun violence. 

My opening commentary, recorded on June 1, 2022, refers to the mass shootings at a Buffalo, New York grocery store and at the Uvalde, Texas elementary school. Unfortunately, there have been more since then, most notably the Highland Park, Illinois Fourth of July Parade mass shooting. There have been more than 300 mass shootings in the US in 2022, according to the Washington Post. (Mass shootings are defined as events in which four or more people — besides the shooter — are killed or injured.) Mass shootings are averaging one per day in 2022, and there have been no weeks in 2022 without a mass shooting, according to the Post. This is not a well-regulated militia. This is a country with more privately owned weapons than people. 

Continue reading Podcast: As Gun Violence Rocks US, March for Our Lives Calls for Action

March for Our Lives Calls Out Lawmakers at Press Conference (video)

March for Our Lives

On June 1, 2022, March for Our Lives Phoenix hosted a press conference calling for Governor Doug Ducey and the Arizona Legislature to take action on common sense gun violence prevention legislation.

Jacob Martinez, March for Our Lives Phoenix organizer, gave opening remarks and introduced Superintendent of Public Instruction Kathy Hoffman, Democratic House Minority Leader Reginald Bolding, and Senate Minority Leader Rebecca Rios.

Continue reading March for Our Lives Calls Out Lawmakers at Press Conference (video)

When Will the US Take Meaningful Steps to End Gun Violence (video)

Rep. Pam Powers Hannley

In May 2022, within 10 days of each other, there were two mass murders in the US.

On May 14, 10 black people were gunned down and three others injured in a neighborhood grocery store in Buffalo, New York.

On May 24, 2022, 19 children and two teachers were murdered and 17 wounded inside an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas.

When will the United States take meaningful steps to curb gun violence in this country?

Continue reading When Will the US Take Meaningful Steps to End Gun Violence (video)

More Guns in Schools & on Campuses Won’t Make Us Safer (video)

Rep. Pam Powers Hannley on guns in schools

Arizona House Republicans have at least five bills that will make it easier for people under 21 to possess firearms: HB2414, HB2448, HB2489, HB2447, and HB2610. Four of these bills expand the presence of weapons in K-12 schools or college campuses. More weapons in educational institutions will create more fear among the students and instructors. We want our children and grandchildren to learn in a safe environment. These militaristic bills create the opposite scenario. More guns in schools won’t make anyone safer.

Continue reading More Guns in Schools & on Campuses Won’t Make Us Safer (video)

Protect Victims: Bring Back Child Abuse Reporting Bill (video)

PPH

Grandstanding and pontificating are standard fare in the Arizona Legislature. Multiple hot topics — mask mandates, voter suppression, abortion, the border, child abuse, and others — have sparked lengthy debates.

This video is a follow-up to the one I made after my “no” vote on Rep. Leo Biasiucci’s mandatory sentencing bill for multiple levels of child abuse, HB2889, and the subsequent social media splash.

If we really want to help child sexual abuse victims, we should bring back Senator Paul Boyer’s bill from 2019 which lengthens the time period to report past abuse. Arizona is not soft on sentencing pedophiles, but it is soft on reporting child sexual abuse. Boyer educated us by telling us that Arizona had the most lenient laws in the country for pedophiles. He said Arizona law “protected predators, not victims.” Adults who had been abused in the past had only 2 years after age 18 to report abuse as a child and identify abusers. Boyer’s original raised the age limit for past complaints from 20 to 30 and added a 1-2 year window for older people to report past abusers. After a long battle, a watered down version of Boyer’s bill passed in 2019. Let’s lengthen that window and go after the long-term pedophiles who are lurking in our churches, schools, youth organizations, sports teams and work. Former victims deserve their day in court.

Continue reading Protect Victims: Bring Back Child Abuse Reporting Bill (video)

#BlackLivesMatter Protests Call for End to Structural Racism…Again (video)

Black Lives Matter

Two black men– George Floyd of Minneapolis and Dion Johnson of Phoenix — died on the same day at the hands of law enforcement officers. In the video, Floyd says he can’t breathe as a white officer pins him to the ground with his knee. Why is that even an approved tactic for police?

There is no video of Johnson’s death. We may never know how a man who was asleep in his car ended up dead after a state trooper stopped to check on him. Neither of these officers was wearing a body camera. We have structural racism in our country. It’s not just systemic; racism is baked into our laws and how those laws are enforced.

Here is a case in point. Last August after the Elizabeth Warren rally in Tempe, my husband and I were driving home to Tucson on I 10 after dark. You’ll remember that I 10 was under construction at that time, and the speed limit went up and down in the interior of the state. Jim and I had had a pizza in Tempe before we hopped on the freeway. I had a glass of wine with the pizza, but he had no alcoholic beverages. He was studiously following the speed limit changes on I 10 when we saw DPS flashers and heard the siren behind us.

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