A powerful display of empty shoes on Capitol Lawn remembers the thousands of children killed by gun violence in America in recent years. #NotOneMore
7,000 Pairs Of Shoes On Capitol Lawn Are Powerful Nod To Gun Violence
by Willa Frej
March 14, 2018
They are meant to represent the number of children killed in shootings since Sandy Hook.
With the epicenter of policymaking looming large in the background, activists on Tuesday placed 7,000 pairs of empty shoes across the Capitol lawn, an impossible-to-ignore symbol of the children lost to gun violence since the 2012 Sandy Hook massacre.
Families who have lost children to shootings were invited to contribute their kids’ shoes, said global advocacy group Avaaz, which organized the event.
“I’ll be traveling to D.C. literally wearing my son Daniel’s shoes, the ones he wore the day he died at Columbine,” said Tom Mauser, whose son was killed in the Columbine mass shooting. “I think this kind of event with shoes offers a very powerful metaphor both for how we miss the victims who once filled those shoes, and also for how we see ourselves wanting to walk in their place, seeking change, so that others don’t have to walk this painful journey.”
People across the country, including celebrities, donated shoes to the display, which Avaaz said covered more than 10,000 square feet of grounds outside the Capitol. Several Democratic lawmakers visited the site, taking the opportunity to call out congressional inaction on gun reform.
According to CNN, Avaaz took the 7,000 figure from a 2017 American Academy of Pediatrics report, which found that almost 1,300 children die from gunshot wounds in the U.S. every year.
Tom Mauser lost his son Daniel at Columbine. He’s at the Capitol today to say #NotOneMore. Read more