Montclair is joining the growing chorus calling for stricter gun regulations.
Dozens of Montclair residents piled in a bus and drove to Lincoln Park in Jersey City on Saturday for the Jersey Strong Rally to curb gun violence.
The Montclair contingent was organized by the local grassroots organization BlueWaveNJ and its subsidiary, North Jersey Chapter of Ceasefire New Jersey.
“This is not about the 2nd Amendment, this is about public safety," said Marcia Marley, President of BlueWaveNJ.
The rally was put on by One Million Moms 4 Gun Control, a grassroots organization formed after the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Conn.
More than 200 people, including mayors and local and state politicians, were in attendance to throw their support behind the gun control initiatives proposed at the state and federal level.
Montclair has experienced gun violence, both recently and in years past. In February, a 29-year-old Bloomfield man was shot and killed near Mission Street. And in July, a Villanova student was killed in what police called a targeted incident.
And in 1995, four men were shot to death in the Watchung post office.
President Barack Obama proposed introducing stricter gun control legislation earlier this month, according to the Washington Post, that would:
- Ban military-assault type weapons.
- Ban ammunition magazines holding more than 10 bullets.
- Require background checks for all gun purchases.
- Crackdown on gun trafficking.
Obama also signed 23 executive orders to strengthen current background checks, promote research on gun violence and provide additional training.
Marley said BlueWave is not calling for the government to take away all guns, but rather military-style guns and enacting proper regulation.
“It is not about taking away your guns,” said Marley. “It is about regulating an industry. ... We regulate pharmaceuticals; we regulate cars and we have licenses; we regulate many industries.
“This is about sensible gun regulation. It’s about banning unsafe, military-style guns that are not needed for hunting.”
Marley added that BlueWave is also supporting state initiatives introduced in January to strengthen gun laws even more. New Jersey currently has some of the strictest gun regulation in the nation.
Gun regulation bills proposed this month in the Assembly and Senate include:
- Reducing the amount of bullets in a magazine to five (A3364).
- Requiring psychological evaluations and in-home inspections as prerequisite to purchase firearms (A3676).
- Requiring mental health evaluations and list of household members with mental illness to purchase firearms (A3688).
- Regulating the sale and transfer of rifle and shotgun ammunition (S2464).
- Revising the definition of destructive devices to include weapons of 50 cal. or greater (A3659).
- Prohibiting the mail order, Internet, telephone and any other anonymous method of ammunition sales in New Jersey (A3666).