Valley Breeze

The Valley Breeze Cumberland Lincoln 06-13-2019

The Valley Breeze Newspapers serving the Northern Rhode Island towns of Cumberland, Lincoln, Woonsocket, Smithfield, North Smithfield, Pawtucket, North Providence, Scituate, Foster, and Glocester

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2 CUMBERLAND JUNE 13-19, 2019 | VALLEY BREEZE | CUMBERLAND LINCOLN EDITION CUMBERLAND – Rejecting sug- gestions of an underlying insidious plan to degrade Second Amendment rights, the Town Council last week backed a resolution declaring June 7 as National Gun Violence Awareness Day in town. The council voted 5-1 for the reso- lution, with Council President Peter Bradley the nay vote. A call to action was issued prior to the June 5 meeting urging supporters of gun rights to show up at the meet- ing, and many ended up turning out. Sue Larson, on the leadership team of the Rhode Island Chapter of advocacy group Moms Demand Action, urged the council to pass a resolution she said supports doing more to "end the epidemic of gun violence" and bringing more aware- ness to what can be done to reduce it. The resolution gives a list of statis- tics on those who have lost their lives to gun violence, stating that support of Second Amendment rights for law-abiding citizens goes hand-in- hand with keeping guns away from people with dangerous histories. It mentions that a national coali- tion of organizations has designated the first Friday in June as National Gun Violence Awareness Day and that by wearing orange on that day, it will raise awareness about gun vio- lence and honor the lives of victims and survivors. "We renew our commitment to reduce gun violence and pledge to do all we can to keep firearms out of the wrong hands and encourage responsible gun owners to help keep our children safe," states the resolu- tion. Fred Lerner, president of the Cumberland Beagle Club, spoke on behalf of the "Second Amendment community," noting the club's many acts of service and charity to the community and suggesting that this resolution is an attempt to "vilify the entire community." Members of Larson's group have long been trying to change gun rights laws, and this is part of a strategy to start at the ground level to get sup- port and work their way up, Lerner suggested. This is a federal issue, he said, and should stay at that level. He said the Beagle Club is "very much against this" as the first move "down a slippery slope." He urged the council to support members of his organization the way they sup- port the community. Councilor Lisa Beaulieu said there may be a belief that there is a broad- er mission and motivation behind the resolution, but she thinks it's related to awareness and not an attempt to restrict Second Amendment rights for responsible gun owners. She also applauded the efforts of the Beagle Club in the community. Councilor Bob Shaw agreed, saying as a veteran he too sup- ports the rights of gun owners but doesn't see the resolution equating to Cumberland declaring itself "an anti-gun community or anything of that sort." He said as a father he's fine with raising awareness that gun violence is happening in the country, and sees nothing wrong with declar- ing a day of awareness. He thanked both parties for making their case in a positive way. Councilor Mike Kinch, former deputy police chief in the town, said he too supports the Second Amendment, but "didn't see any- thing anti-gun owner" in the resolu- tion. Bradley later told The Valley Breeze he saw the resolution as a "step toward going against the Second Amendment," saying he put his "faith in the president of the local gun club" in opposing it. Lerner was right that orange has always been the color of gun users, and he agrees with Lerner that this is an effort to start a grassroots campaign against guns. If this resolution was truly about reducing violence and wasn't oppos- ing guns, said Bradley, it should have mentioned other forms of violence. "To put 'gun' in it, that's only tar- geting one thing, in my opinion," he said. Despite opposition, Cumberland council passes resolution on gun violence By ETHAN SHOREY Valley Breeze Managing Editor ethan@valleybreeze.com GREAT VALUE QUALITY SERVICE 36 BLACKSTONE STREET WOONSOCKET 401-766-3270 WWW.TERRYAUTOLTD.COM Gil & Meika 2008 ToyoTa Rav 4 FWD, Loaded 80K miles ............................ $ 8,495 Now Offering On-Site Bank Financing Westlake Financial WE BUY CARS 2014 NissaN Rogue AWD ........................................... $ 10,995

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