SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — Recent deadly mass shootings in New York and Texas have grabbed the attention of people across the country, and this weeekend a protest against gun violence took place in central Sioux Falls.
Protesters old, young and in-between gathered Saturday at Van Eps Park to protest, to end gun violence.
“Enough is enough! Enough is enough!”
Anna Johnson has wanted to be a teacher since she was three years old.
“I want to be a teacher and I want to educate students. I want to be their rock, their light, their shoulder they need,” event coordinator Anna Johnson said.
Johnson organized Saturday’s demonstration after 19 students in Texas lost their lives. She says she wants to advocate for future students.
“I don’t want to have to explain to them how to cry quietly,” Johnson said.
“There’s blood in the streets! No justice no peace!”
Paige Gordon is graduating this weekend from Lincoln High School. She attended the protest today for her two younger siblings.
“It’s not about fighting the other side, it’s about trying to keep people safe. Especially when it’s happening so frequently. I have a younger brother and sister, they’re in high school right now, I don’t want to wake up one morning and hear they got shot,” Gordon said.
“No more silence! End gun violence!”
Each attendee has their own reason for attending, but the overall message is clear.
“It’s great to see people come together to support something that everyone here is so passionate about. We just want the violence to stop, that’s basically the biggest message here,” co-coordinator Etta McKinley said.
“We all know that our kids do not deserve to die like this. They don’t deserve to live like this, be huddled under desks,” Shannon Emry with Mom’s Demand Action said.
“No matter what we all want change, and that should be the goal. Everyone in South Dakota has different opinions of how this can be reached. But as a community together we can all come and decide change needs to happen,” Johnson said.
Around 20-30 demonstrators were at Saturday’s event.