ELGIN, TX. — The Texas chapters of Moms Demand Action and Students Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, released the following statement in response to the shooting outside H-E-B supermarket on Tuesday night in Elgin, Texas. Though reports are still emerging, we know that two cheerleaders had mistaken the shooter’s car as their own, and when apologizing, shots were fired. This is at least the third incident this week in which young people were shot under similar circumstances.
“Texas lawmakers have created a reality for my generation where a mishap as small as mistaking my car for another could be met with gunfire,” said Brynn Beecham, a volunteer with the Texas chapter of Students Demand Action. “We should not have to fear for our lives coming home from practice or going to school – we will not accept that this is how we must live.”
“All over the country, we are witnessing the fallout of the gun lobby’s ‘guns everywhere’ agenda, as lives are lost and others are permanently altered in senseless and preventable tragedies, ” said Grace Hedrick, a volunteer with the Texas chapter of Moms Demand Action. “We are heartbroken over the events that transpired on Tuesday night. We all have the right to public safety — to feel safe in our homes, in our daily routines, and in our communities — and we won’t stop until every Texan is guaranteed it.”
This shooting occurs as the one-year marker of the Uvalde mass shooting quickly approaches. Texas state legislature is currently considering HB2744, a common-sense gun safety bill that could raise the age to purchase firearms from 18 to 21: firearms are the leading cause of death for young people ages 18 to 20 and this could greatly subvert these tragedies. However, lawmakers are also considering HB3, a dangerous gun-lobby priority bill to require an armed presence at every school in Texas – furthering the ‘guns everywhere agenda’. Texas lawmakers have the opportunity to pass common-sense legislation to protect their citizens from increased access to deadly weapons and decrease senseless violence.
Texas has the 26th highest rate of gun deaths in the United States and some of the weakest gun laws in the country. Instead of further weakening the state’s gun laws, lawmakers should pass policies that will protect communities such as raising the age to purchase firearms and enact an Extreme Risk law to empower loved ones or law enforcement to intervene in order to temporarily prevent someone in crisis from accessing firearms.
In an average year, 3,996 people die by guns in Texas, and 5,556 more are wounded. Guns are the leading cause of death among children and teens in Texas. More information on gun violence in Texas is available here.
If you are interested in speaking with a Texas Moms Demand Action or Students Demand volunteer, or a policy expert please reach out to [email protected].