Contact: Ari Geller, West End Strategy Team, email@example.com, 202-776-7700
In the aftermath of two horrific mass shootings in less than 24 hours in El Paso, Texas and Dayton, Ohio, once again we are seeing public officials deflect from taking substantive action by using “thoughts and prayers” as a cover. In response, Rabbi Jack Moline, president of Interfaith Alliance, reshared a statement he first released following the tragic shooting in San Bernadino in 2015.
“I am a person of faith. I have spent my entire adult life as a member of the clergy. I have an intensely personal relationship with the God in whom I believe. I pray every day. And here is what I know: praying after the fact for something preventable is an affront to God and humanity.”
Rabbi Moline added to his 2015 statement the following, “We said it then and we will keep saying it. This is about guns; while prayers are well-intentioned, they don’t solve the problem. Nor do attempts by President Trump to misdirect the public’s attention toward issues like video games and mental illness. Both may need to be addressed, but without real efforts aimed at regulating access to guns, we will continue seeing thousands of Americans die every year.”
“Gun violence does not discriminate. It affects all of our communities, regardless of who we are. That said, when hate and white supremacy is added to the mix, black and brown communities and LGBTQ people are particularly at risk of being targeted. It is clear that these shooters are using rhetoric from President Trump, his supporters and the right-wing media to fuel their hatred and validate their violence. We are failing our children and the most vulnerable in our society by not having the courage to take on the gun lobby and rewrite our laws to better regulate access to firearms.”
Interfaith Alliance is a network of people of diverse faiths and beliefs from across the country working together to build a resilient democracy and fulfill America’s promise of religious freedom and civil rights not just for some, but for all. We mobilize powerful coalitions to challenge Christian nationalism and religious extremism, while fostering a better understanding of the healthy boundaries between religion and government. We advocate at all levels of government for an equitable and just America where the freedoms of belief and religious practice are protected, and where all persons are treated with dignity and have the opportunity to thrive. For more information visit interfaithalliance.org.