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Update: March on Washington for Gun Control

Dear Friends:

It’s been nearly three weeks since our March on Washington for Gun Control, and your calls, petition-signing, and all your actions large and small continue to have a tremendous impact. The conversation is ongoing for common sense legislation around gun control because of your efforts.
Since the March, we’ve seen:
  • The National Press List reported, “From Miami to Las Vegas, St. Paul to St. Petersburg, Denver to Des Moines, Tampa to Tallahassee and Orlando, elected officials, faith and civil rights leaders, victims of gun violence, concerned citizens called on Congressional delegation to support President Obama’s common sense gun violence prevention measures. Ahead of the President’s State of the Union address, these communities offered their own State of the Union address to members of Congress on the importance of tackling gun violence, a plague that is snuffing out the lives of thirty-three people including nearly nine children and teenagers in America every single day.” Visit these links: Protect Children, Not Guns (Children’s Defense Fund), Miami Leaders Give State of the Union Message on Gun Violence (NBC Miami).
  • The President was brilliant at the State of the Union address and included gun violence reduction among his priorities. He was emotional and moving in his drive to motivate legislators. Many survivors of gun violence were in attendance (read more: Washington Post; ABC News).
  • More meetings and conversations on the Hill.
  • Our friends who marched with us from Newtown have formed an advocacy organization called Newtown Action Alliance.

In the past few weeks we’ve also received queries from many people who would like to organize their own marches for gun control, seeking our advice. We’re happy to share our project report with anyone who requests it, but here are some of the lessons that we learned from the March that might be useful:

  • You will experience obstacles and resistors. Stay true to your mission, stay committed and stay optimistic.
  • We don’t believe there is a template for how to create a March. Be sure to get your permits and start working on insurance early. But our success was because it was a completely grass-roots effort, and so the work, the inspiration, and the shape of the March needs to come from each organizing group organically. We were able to organize, fundraise and create the March in one wild and crazy month.
  • We were fortunate to have an amazing group of volunteers staffing media relations and they made sure our March received tremendous pre-event and day-of press. We were covered in over 620 media outlets!
  • We viewed this March as a large-scale, site-specific, one-day-only production and took careful consideration of the optics. The March itself was a silent March with participants holding placards bearing 1000 names of individuals whose lives were lost from gun violence. Music and theater played an important role in the rally and be sure your speakers are inspirational. Our were from the worlds of politics, activists, artists and organizers.
  • Working independent of any organization allowed us to achieve goals quickly as there was neither bureaucracy nor red tape to cut through.

As we wrote after the March, we will memorialize our Facebook and other online pages at the end of February. Our intention was never to create another organization; rather we hope to transition your involvement to other organizations.

This is a real honest to god movement in cities all over the country—it’s moved from a wave to a tsunami.

Carry on!

Molly & Suzanne

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Video

If you weren’t able to join us for the January 26 March on Washington for Gun Control, you can view the entire rally online! Many, many thanks to Mark Beachy and Maryland Theatre Guide for capturing the event. See below for times of specific guests and speakers.

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00:35 - Molly Smith, March on Washington for Gun Control
02:30 - Benedict Campbell and Thomas Adrian Simpson
04:52 - footage from the March down Constitution Avenue
06:18 - music: “Imagine” (DC theater chorus)
09:10 - Suzanne Blue Star Boy, March on Washington for Gun Control
10:20 - Mayor Vincent C. Gray, Washington, DC
15:55 - Chairman Phil Mendelson, DC City Council
18:36 - Pastor Dean Snyder, Foundry United Methodist Church
23:53 - Arne Duncan, US Secretary of Education
27:26 - Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, Washington, DC
40:06 - Marty Isaac, Connecticut Against Gun Violence
44:14 - Colin Goddard, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence (survivor of the Virginia Tech Massacre)
48:15 - Congressman Christopher Van Hollen, 8th District, Maryland
55:56 - poetry: “Breathe Deep” (Daniel Beaty)
1:00:20 - Shannon Watts, One Million Moms for Gun Control
1:06:20 - music: “What’s Going On?” (Nova Y. Payton)
1:10:45 - Marian Wright Edelman, Children’s Defense Fund
1:17:25 - Meghana DeSale, Doctors for America
1:20:02 - Rev. Delman Coates, Mt. Ennon Baptist Church
1:26:27 - music: “Hallelujah” (Eleasha Gamble, Nehal Joshi, Nicholas Rodriguez)
1:30:50 - Paul Oakley Stovall, playwright (survivor of gun violence)
1:32:30 - Kathleen Turner

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DO SOMETHING EVERY DAY

A note from Molly Smith, our co-founder, about the March on Washington for Gun Control:

“The March was outstanding. It was a clear day in DC but our hearts were warm. More than 6,000 people marched and rallied. Speakers were brilliant from the secretary of Education Arne Duncan to Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton who brought down the house with a barnstormer of a speech. Performers from the area theaters directed by Matt Gardiner sang ‘America the Beautiful’ to ‘Imagine’ and were heavenly. Daniel Beatty moved us with his poetry written especially for now—about breath and our inner connectedness. So much more—huge crowds marching in the streets led by our Mayor and council members. When we stand together, we stand a chance.

"It was clear…thank you for a team of citizen activists who were talented and committed and full of spirit. And now the work continues: I hope people do something every day—speak to someone who disagrees with you, sign petition, write a letter…it all lies with us. We are the change we have been waiting for. We can do this. It’s a movement now and we’re in it! A wave that becomes an ocean—there are waves all over the country. We’re starting to feel the ocean now. Good.”

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Update: March on Washington for Gun Control

LESS THAN 24 HOURS to go until the March on Washington for Gun Control!

We are marching in memory of those lost, in support of love over violence, to let the people’s voice be heard, for our children, for our country, for common sense, for our fellow man—whatever your reason for joining us, thank you.

We have a new mobile guide to the March—information on speakers, locations, schedule, Metro, parking, and more. Save it to your smartphone’s home screen for easy access.

  • $46,648 raised out of $49,000 needed
  • 3,266 confirmed marchers
  • 573 followers on Twitter

Bundle up and pack some snacks, it’s going to be chilly tomorrow.

“When we stand together, we stand a chance.”
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Link

Coming from out of town? Save our mobile guide in your iPhone or Android: schedule, speaker roster, route, Metro, parking, and more. Save it to your homescreen for easy access.

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Update: March on Washington for Gun Control

A LITTLE OVER 36 HOURS until we March on Washington for Gun Control.

We are happy to announce that the Alliance for Global Justice will be acting as our fiscal agent. As they are a registered non-profit 501(c)3, all donations are now tax-deductible. Many, many thanks to AGJ for assisting the cause of sensible gun legislation.

  • $44,037 raised out of $49,000 needed
  • 3,162 confirmed marchers
  • 555 followers on Twitter
Start looking for your gloves, hats, scarves, sweaters, coats, and long underwear—it’s going to be a chilly day in DC. Get ready!
“When we stand together, we stand a chance.”
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Update: March on Washington for Gun Control

LESS THAN 48 HOURS until the March on Washington for Gun Control: 10:00 AM, January 26, 2013.

The setup of the mainstage and rally at the Washington Monument (12:00 PM) has changed slightly. Click here to see the new layout as well as a route of the March. Additionally, we have updated our speaker and performer biographies. Click below to see the new documents:

With only hours to go, here’s where we stand:

  • $42,647 raised out of $49,000 needed
  • 3,093 confirmed marchers
  • 536 followers on Twitter

This Saturday, stand with us—we can make a difference.

“When we stand together, we stand a chance.”
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Update: March on Washington for Gun Control

JUST THREE DAYS LEFT until the March on Washington for Gun Control!

We regret that Ron Pinciaro will be unable to attend. He sends in his place Marty Isaac, president of the Connecticut Against Gun Violence Education Fund. We hope to have his biography soon.

Remember, if you’re interested in volunteering to be a marshal at the March this Saturday, please e-mail us; be prepared to join us for a meeting in Washington, DC this Friday from 6-10 PM.

We are counting down the hours. Here are our current numbers:

  • $41,757 raised out of $49,000 needed
  • 3,022 confirmed marchers
  • 531 followers on Twitter

If we all stand together, we can do this!

“When we stand together, we stand a chance.”
Donate - Attend - Follow

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Update: March on Washington for Gun Control

ONLY THREE DAYS LEFT until the March on Washington for Gun Control!

We have updated our list of speakers! Please join us in welcoming Meghan DeSale, northeast regional director of Doctors for America, and Ron Pinciaro, executive director of the Connecticut Against Gun Violence Education Fund.

Today’s updated resources:

Remember, if you’re interested in volunteering to be a marshal at the March this Saturday, please e-mail us; be prepared to join us for a meeting in Washington, DC this Friday from 6-10 PM.

We are counting down the hours. Here are our current numbers:

  • $40,262 raised out of $49,000 needed
  • 2,885 confirmed marchers
  • 518 followers on Twitter

If we all stand together, we can do this!

"When we stand together, we stand a chance."
Donate - Attend - Follow

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Update: March on Washington for Gun Control

FOUR DAYS LEFT until the March on Washington for Gun Control.

- There was a shooting today at Lone Star College outside of Houston, TX. This must stop.

- One of our organizers, Nikkieli DeMone, will appear on Piers Morgan Tonight in a town hall on gun violence. Tune into CNN at 9 PM EST.

- Our speakers have been updated! We welcome poet, playwright, and performer Daniel Beaty; Marian Wright Edelman, President of the Children’s Defense Fund; and the Very Rev. Gary R. Hall, dean of Washington National Cathedral. See updated bios for more information.

- In addition to our page on rally.org, we can now accept donations via text message! Text “March” to 90975. Message and data rates may apply; check with your mobile phone carrier. See our rally.org page for a breakdown of our estimated costs.

- We are in need of volunteer marshals to help coordinate the March. If you are willing to volunteer, please e-mail us and be ready to attend a volunteer meeting in Washington, DC this Friday evening from 6-10 PM.

Over 2,700 people have RSVPed already—have you?

"When we stand together, we stand a chance."
Donate
 - Attend - Follow