Baltimore City Council halted a hearing on this summer’s Brooklyn Day mass shooting, the worst in recent city history, after Krystal Gonzalez — whose 18-year-old daughter, Aaliyah, was killed in the eruption of gunfire — gave emotional testimony that left many in the chamber in tears. Some public safety advocates and elected officials questioned the decision to postpone the rest of the hearing, characterizing it as a missed opportunity to examine the policing errors and inaction that preceded the shooting. [The Baltimore Banner]
From Our Team
Many violence prevention programs hope to reach young people, but not all programs reach the young people they hope to help. The disconnect is especially visible in Chicago, where Black and Latino people, on average, witness at least one shooting by the time they’re 14. Part of the problem, reports The Trace’s Rita Oceguera, stems from a lack of trust.
Oceguera spoke to more than a dozen organizations and a dozen young people to assess whether youth programming effectively reaches its intended participants. Young people said they’re not always aware of the resources available to them — and noted that instead of directly asking them what they need, they don’t feel adults take the time to get to know them. In her latest piece, Oceguera probes a fundamental question: How can city leaders and organizers earn young people’s trust?
What to Know Today
California Governor Gavin Newsom’s proposal to call a national constitutional convention on gun safety has generated more than a fair share of controversy. After the state Legislature approved his proposal, Newsom explained why he thinks it’s necessary: He sees no future for firearm reform in federal courts, nor does he think gun violence is “an issue that Congress alone can solve.” [San Francisco Chronicle]
The newly released National Crime Victimization Survey shows a massive increase in “firearm victimizations” last year. But that doesn’t necessarily mean there was a surge in gun violence: The 2022 NCVS doesn’t conform to other data; the survey has a not-insignificant margin of error; and its definition of “firearm victimization” does not inherently equate to shootings. [Jeff Asher]
Rural-state Democrats are feuding with the Biden administration over a provision of last year’s Bipartisan Safer Communities Act that prohibits schools from using certain federal dollars for programs that “train students in the use of a ‘dangerous weapon.’” Per the Education Department’s interpretation, that includes archery and shooting programs — which have long been popular in rural states with a heritage of hunting. [Politico]
There have been at least 16 shootings at high school football games since August 1, according to the K-12 School Shooting Database. That puts the country on track to match last year’s pace, when “there was at least one shooting at a football game each week” through November, per database founder David Riedman. [NBC]
What does anti-gun violence activism look like on the ground? A new book of photography by J.M. Giordano documents the groups and movements that have been working to counter gun violence in Baltimore since 2013. [The Guardian/Nighted Life]
The Philadelphia School District is implementing ALICE active-shooter training, a controversial regimen that involves teaching students to “counter,” or distract, intruders — including by throwing objects, making loud noises, and sometimes tackling the shooter. Officials say only high school students and staff will be taught the “countering” method. [Billy Penn] Context: While ALICE points to some incidents as proof that its tactics save lives, The Trace reported in 2020, the company’s record is a lot more complicated, and little evidence exists to support its methods.
The Company Behind America’s Scariest School Shooter Drills: The ALICE Training Institute was an early proponent of having teachers and students confront gunmen. There’s little evidence its approach works. (December 2019)