Activists want answers after Jacksonville shooting

Posted at 5:10 PM, Aug 27, 2018
and last updated 2018-08-27 20:30:03-04

JACKSONVILLE, Fla.-- Activists showed up with signs and demanded answers after a mass shooting in Jacksonville Sunday.

One sign said: 'Welcome to the Gunshine State.' Another said: 'Dear Jax Leaders Stop the Silence End Gun Violence.'

"Basically just saying Florida especially has seen so much gun violence not just in mass shootings but in smaller altercations," said Kayla Dixon from Clearwater.

Other young women from the Tampa area wasted no time after learning of the shooting at the Jacksonville Landing Sunday afternoon.

“My first initial thought was: 'Are you guys okay? What’s going on?' It’s really not that far from home so I hopped in the car this morning, and I was like they need time to heal," Dixon said.

They joined other organizations across the state who gathered in downtown Jacksonville just outside the steps of city hall to demand action 

“We are losing too many kids, we need to do something different what we have been doing so far is not working," said Jacksonville resident Beverly McClain.

Last year McClain said she lost her son to gun violence: “Come on, something got to change,” she said. 

Kris Kiernan with the Jacksonville Progressive Coalition said: “This is a national issue. Obviously, we had someone who came from up north to come to this event this is not an isolated issue.” 

And together they believe if they are loud enough- and persistent enough- something soon has got to give.

“This is what we have become. It’s our culture. A lot of people have become desensitized to it, and that’s a culture shift we need to work on changing," Dixon said.

The group plans to hold a prayer vigil outside of city hall steps Monday before marching as a group to the Jacksonville Landing.