As a La Grange resident, and constituent of IL Senator Christine Radogno and IL Representative Jim Durkin, I was pleased to see the Children’s Safety Expo announcement that they are hosting on Saturday, June 7th, in Downers Grove, along with IL Rep. Ron Sandack. However, I was concerned when I noticed that among law enforcement and healthcare organizations, the National Rifle Association was listed as a participant. I contacted the Reps' offices and was told that it was printed in error, that the NRA was not participating, passing out literature, etc., but that the NRA lobbyist was bringing his truck to participate in the “Touch a Truck” event. I followed-up by asking that the NRA lobbyist and his truck not participate to clear up any confusion about the organization being associated with the event. If he/she does participate, I asked that any NRA-type signage on the truck be covered up or removed so participants—especially children—did not assume the NRA was associated with a children’s safety event.
If our representatives are genuinely concerned about the welfare of our children, I suggested that they spend their time with the NRA lobbyist asking the NRA to support federal background checks, lobby for stronger gun trafficking laws, and embrace funding for the CDC to study gun violence (e.g., homicide with firearms and suicide by firearms are listed as the second and fourth leading causes of death among individuals 15-24). All of these are reasonable measures that would make a difference in reducing firearm injuries and fatalities in IL, and across our country.