GUNS DOWN, WATER GUNS UP EVENT LOOKS TO STOP GUN VIOLENCE BY PROMOTING PEACE AND FUN

Water Guns

children playing

Gun violence has claimed the lives of several Tuscaloosa residents in recent weeks but a group of local organizers attempted to buck that trend by hosting the Guns Down, Water Guns Up event at the Jaycee Park on Sunday.

During the event, kids ran around the park soaking each other with water guns to show people that they can resort to peace and fun instead of gun violence.

Co-organizer Michael Simmons said that he saw a similar event in Atlanta and wanted to bring it to Tuscaloosa.

“No one wants to lose their child to nonsense, so I just saw that they did it in Atlanta and so I said we need to do this in Tuscaloosa and a lot of people responded to it,” Simmons said.

Children are oftentimes the victims of gun violence. According to the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia, 1.7 million children in the U.S. live with unlocked or loaded guns in their homes and 2,824 children died of gunshot wounds in 2015.

“As far as the community goes when it comes to the children it does take a village, we all have to help each other,” co-organizer Natasha Thomas said. “If you can’t watch mine and I can’t watch yours there is something that is wrong. If you can’t correct mine and I can’t correct yours something is wrong. We have to help each other it is not a single person job. It takes a village to get the children in order.”

County police officials are holding a press conference to address gun violence in Tuscaloosa County on Monday morning.

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