DETROIT – Jennifer Kurland released a thorough statement Tuesday calling for action after Sunday night's massacre in Las Vegas.
Kurland is running for Michigan governor as a Green Party candidate. She is calling for "reasonable gun control" and "action, not thoughts and prayers" after the shooting which killed 59 people and injured more than 500, making it the deadliest mass shooting in U.S. history.
Here is Kurland's full statement:
Yet again we are forced to bear witness to our friends, neighbors and fellow citizens falling to a domestic terrorist attack. Every time this happens hopes and prayers are shared by politicians who witness these tragedies. These politicians have the power to make change, and change never happens. They wait, there is yet another mass shooting, and the cycle tragically continues.
I remember clearly the mass shootings at Columbine which happened in my senior year of high school, and still today a school shooting is my greatest fear as a member of the Redford Union School Board. It is terrorism that causes this fear. We must act now on reasonable gun control, and we must stop calling these shootings as perpetrated by "lone wolves" and "nice guys" in the media. There is a very serious issue in our country of white supremacy, and it manifests itself in this kind of violence against all of us. At the time of writing this statement 58 people have been murdered and 515 people injured, and I am enough of a realist to understand that the number of murders is going to increase over the next hours and days by a few of those brave victims who are fighting for their lives right now in a Las Vegas hospital. The power of numbers and the law of six degrees of separation mean that nearly every American knows someone who was affected by this tragedy today. I have at least one friend whose brother was at the concert, and thankfully escaped unharmed.
I understand the fear of politicians eroding the second amendment. I believe in personal gun ownership. I believe in personal, responsible gun ownership. I believe that it is possible to make sensible gun laws that won't infringe on the rights of law-abiding citizens to own guns. We must have comprehensive background checks that cross state boundaries. We must fix our gun control laws, and we must always remember to protect those of us who are the most vulnerable like the children of Sandy Hook.
We must enact legislation to prevent these mass shootings now. Gun owners and non-gun owners alike must come together to solve this deadly problem. I know I'm not alone in saying that I don't want to see another largest mass shooting in U.S. history ever again.
There are more than a dozen people who have declared a run for Michigan governor in 2018. View the full list of candidates here.
Democratic candidate Gretchen Whitmer and Republican candidate Bill Schuette both tweeted about the Las Vegas shooting on Monday:
Heartbroken by news of the horrific shooting in Las Vegas. My thoughts are with the victims and their families.— Governor Gretchen Whitmer (@GovWhitmer) October 2, 2017
Cynthia and I pray for all the victims and families affected by last night's horrific shooting on the Las Vegas strip.— Bill Schuette (@SchuetteOnDuty) October 2, 2017
In 2012, Whitmer wrote an open letter to NRA President Wayne LaPierre after 26 people were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, Ct. It was published by the Huffington Post:
How dare you tell me, and millions of other moms, that the only way we can keep our kids safe is to surround them with more instruments of violence?
How dare you tell our nation that Congress is to blame for this problem when your organization’s lobbying efforts have been responsible for blocking all meaningful gun control measures in recent years?
Meanwhile, as Michigan attorney general, Schuette has been outspokenly in favor of fixing a mental health problem in the United States before digging into gun control. He has repeatedly stressed an interest in protecting the Second Amendment right to bear arms.