One by one, the 13 members of the Minneapolis City Council and Mayor Jacob Frey read aloud lines of a resolution renewing the city’s commitment to reduce gun violence.
Prompted by the deadly school shooting in Parkland, Fla., and the outcry that has followed, the city’s elected officials conducted a sort of responsive reading at the council meeting Friday. Usually council resolutions are read by one person.
“We don’t often do that, but this topic is so important to all of us that we wanted to make this powerful statement,” said Council President Lisa Bender.
The page-long resolution honored the victims and survivors of all gun violence, argued that “support for the Second Amendment rights of law-abiding citizens must not be made at the expense of keeping guns away from dangerous people” and recited a series of statistics. The resolution said that on an average day, 96 Americans are killed by guns, including seven children, and that Americans are 25 times more likely to be killed by a gun than people in other developed countries.
“Gun violence is a concern not only in our schools but across our communities, and every person in Minneapolis deserves to live in a neighborhood free from the impacts of gun violence,” Council Vice President Andrea Jenkins read from the resolution.
Council Member Steve Fletcher continued: “The city of Minneapolis is committed to a holistic approach to ending gun violence in every Minneapolis neighborhood.”
Hundreds of Minneapolis high school students marched on City Hall on Wednesday to demand action to stop gun violence. They were warmly received by the council.
The resolution adopted Friday included discussion of work underway to reduce gun violence in Minneapolis. The city recovered 942 guns in 2017, a 55 percent increase over 2016 that coincided with an 18 percent decrease in gunshot victims.
The city has also adopted a legislative agenda that includes opposition to state pre-emption of local gun control laws, opposes federal conceal-and-carry reciprocity laws and includes support for stricter regulations, including background checks for all gun sales and a statewide ban on the sale of assault weapons.