Kinsey comments on recent mass shootings in Uvalde and Buffalo
HARRISBURG, May 25 – State Rep. Stephen Kinsey, D-Phila., offered reaction to the mass shooting that occurred last weekend in Buffalo, NY and yesterday in Uvalde, TX.
Last weekend an 18-year-old man drove to a supermarket in Buffalo, New York, where many of the shoppers were Black and he shot and killed 10 people. The shooter, Payton Gendron, was a white supremacist who believed in the Great Replacement Theory.
“The fact that this young man researched and found an area with a large Black population and drove there to kill them is an indication of the vile racism and bigotry that is still very alive in our country,” Kinsey said. “We have many people in power across this country who continue to push racist rhetoric that leads to horrific hate crimes like this.”
Kinsey continued, “Two years ago, we saw worldwide protests against racism after the police murder of George Floyd. As the chairman of the Pennsylvania Legislative Black Caucus at the time, I, along with other members of PLBC, held a day of civil disobedience in the state house where we protested against racism and for police reform.”
Kinsey said not enough progress has been made regarding race relations in the U.S.
“We put a lot of work into getting police reform bills and we were successful with some of it. However, hate crimes are becoming commonplace. We must push for bills to protect Black Americans and all Americans from hate crimes.”
Yesterday in Uvalde, Texas, an 18-year-old man went to Robb Elementary School where he shot and killed 19 children and two teachers.
“As a parent, it is incredibly worrying to know that school shootings are becoming so frequent,” Kinsey said. “My heart goes out to the families of the children and teachers, but we must do more to prevent further tragedies like this from happening.”
Kinsey said preventing gun violence is a cause to his heart. He has held numerous public safety meetings and started an initiative called ‘Third Thursday,’ which informs community members about resources to combat the gun violence epidemic in Philadelphia.
“I along with community partners, including city police, Pennsylvania State Police, legislative colleagues, grassroot organizations, clergy and people who care have worked very hard at addressing gun violence that I see in my own community. Gun violence is at an all-time high in Philadelphia, but it’s not just a problem here.”
Kinsey continued, “To combat the gun violence and mass shootings in the commonwealth and across the nation, we need all legislators to be on board. There are too many colleagues of mine from the other side of the aisle who continue to ignore legislation that’s been proposed to address this issue.
“Let me be clear, no one is trying to take away anybody’s Second Amendment rights. We just want to make sure guns are not getting into the wrong hands and that our constituents are safe and don’t have to worry about being shot or killed.”