WAYNESBORO, Ga (WJBF) – Amid all of the social justice protests, multiple organizations in Waynesboro came together to speak out against gun violence.
The Burke County Mayor and Sheriff joined B.R.I.D.G.E. organizers Sunday afternoon to proclaim June as Gun Violence Awareness month.
Leaders want to put an end to people being hurt and killed with a weapon. So they partnered with B.R.I.D.G.E., an acronym for Building Responsible Individuals Developing Greater Examples. Founder Kenya Crumbley says their goal is not to take away guns, but to encourage responsible gun ownership.
“We’re just saying be responsible. Be legal in what you’re doing. Make sure that if you’re going to be a gun owner, be responsible with it. Take it and use it against someone and take someone’s life,” said Crumbley.
The Wear Orange and Stop the Gun Violence rally was the last event of several others Friday, Saturday and Sunday aimed at bringing awareness to Burke County.
“So there’s a lot of community outreach and we believe that this is what it’s gonna take. It’s a multiple disciplinary approach to solving violent crime in our communities,” said Burke County Sheriff, Alfonzo Williams.
Those in attendance gathered in front of the old county courthouse on Liberty Street. Mayor Greg Carswell read a proclamation and everyone lined up in their vehicles for a silent parade through the streets of Waynesboro. The funeral procession style parade included law enforcement vehicles, hearses and the personal vehicles of the attendees.
The Stop the Gun Violence rally came at a time of civil unrest in our country. Mayor Greg Carswell says that it was the perfect time to have this rally because many of the killings of African Americans have happened using guns.
“Down in Brunswick, GA happened with guns. And so it fits right in and I think it’s the perfect time for us to make sure we are aware of what’s going on,” said Carswell.
Organizers of the event traditionally perform a eulogy at the rally for the victims of gun violence. This year they decided to do a parade in order to reach more citizens and have a greater impact.