Red, Blue, and Brady

16: Made on the News

November 04, 2019 Brady
Red, Blue, and Brady
16: Made on the News
Chapters
Red, Blue, and Brady
16: Made on the News
Nov 04, 2019
Brady

JJ and Christian are joined by Chris Hurst, a journalist, former news anchor, and politician of the Democratic Party currently serving as a Delegate in the Virginia House of Delegates for the state's 12th district. Chris decided to leave journalism and run for office after the on-air television murder of his girlfriend, Alison Parker, and her cameraman, Adam Ward. Since that day, Chris has worked on finding solutions for Virginians and Americans--be it on education, health care, the environment, or gun violence prevention. 

JJ and Christian also discuss what happens when people try to shoot guns indoors (you won't be shocked that it's covered in our "Unbelievable, BUT" section) and call out bipartisan legislators who are doing a great job of going across the aisle to help stop this epidemic of gun violence. 

Some of the links mentioned in this episode :
 “Brady Applauds Introduction of the Bipartisan Prevent Family Fire Act.” 

Similar episodes:
Andy Parker on the Confluence of Guns and Google

For more information on Brady, follow us on social
@Bradybuzz, or via our website at bradyunited.org. Full transcripts and bibliography available at bradyunited.org/podcast.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.
Music provided by: David “Drumcrazie” Curby
Special thanks to Hogan Lovells, for their longstanding legal support
 ℗&©2019 Red, Blue, and Brady

Support the show (https://www.bradyunited.org/donate)

Show Notes Transcript

JJ and Christian are joined by Chris Hurst, a journalist, former news anchor, and politician of the Democratic Party currently serving as a Delegate in the Virginia House of Delegates for the state's 12th district. Chris decided to leave journalism and run for office after the on-air television murder of his girlfriend, Alison Parker, and her cameraman, Adam Ward. Since that day, Chris has worked on finding solutions for Virginians and Americans--be it on education, health care, the environment, or gun violence prevention. 

JJ and Christian also discuss what happens when people try to shoot guns indoors (you won't be shocked that it's covered in our "Unbelievable, BUT" section) and call out bipartisan legislators who are doing a great job of going across the aisle to help stop this epidemic of gun violence. 

Some of the links mentioned in this episode :
 “Brady Applauds Introduction of the Bipartisan Prevent Family Fire Act.” 

Similar episodes:
Andy Parker on the Confluence of Guns and Google

For more information on Brady, follow us on social
@Bradybuzz, or via our website at bradyunited.org. Full transcripts and bibliography available at bradyunited.org/podcast.

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: 1-800-273-8255.
Music provided by: David “Drumcrazie” Curby
Special thanks to Hogan Lovells, for their longstanding legal support
 ℗&©2019 Red, Blue, and Brady

Support the show (https://www.bradyunited.org/donate)

Brady music:

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Christian:

Hey everybody. This is the legal disclaimer where we tell you that the views, thoughts, and opinions shared on this podcast belongs solely to us, the people talking to you right now and not necessarily Brady or Brady affiliates. Please note this podcast contains discussions of violence that some people may find disturbing. It's okay. I find them disturbing, too.

Brady music:

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JJ:

Welcome back everybody to "Red, Blue and Brady," the podcast all about gun violence prevention. Now today I am joined again by Christian , our Vice President of Policy here at Brady and I've got to say that he and JP fought over who got to be in with this interview and of course obviously then Christian was victorious, because they are both huge fans of our guest . Chris Hurst . Chris is a delegate in the Virginia House of delegates. He's representing the 12th district. He is also a former journalist , a survivor and a Phillies fan. Yeah, just let it go. Christian , you now, later in our unbelievable, but segment, we are talking about a gentleman who tried to stop his neighbors who are making noise but didn't practice firearm safety and ended up just causing himself a world of hurt. Then we're wrapping up with our gun violence prevention hero, a group of politicians going across the aisle and an attempt to save lives. Can you imagine Christian?

Christian:

I cannot.

JJ:

Yeah, but first let's hear from Chris.

Brady music:

***music plays***

JJ:

And so Chris, can you introduce yourself to our audience?

Chris Hurst:

My name is Chris Hurst . I am the delegate for the 12th house district in the Virginia House of delegates.

Christian:

You know, in particular, I was really excited to be able to interview you because we've gotten close over the years and, and um, we're a part of a , uh , a club, right, that, that nobody wants to be a part of. And, and , um, I know that it , uh , has given you a lot of drive , um, in your work, in your calling. Um, and you know, similarly for me, even though I wish that we didn't know each other, I, I was hoping that you could give our listeners some background , um, in your story and what connects you to the gun violence prevention movement?

Chris Hurst:

Yeah, so , um, I joined this club back in August of 2015. Uh, I was a television news anchor in Roanoke, Virginia for the CVS station WDVJ and uh , was very happy in what I was doing as a journalist and as an anchor and was also a N love was dating the morning reporter Alison Parker . And in August of 2015, we had just moved in together at the beginning of the month and celebrated her 24th birthday. Later on that month and three days after we came back from a little mini birthday vacation, kayaking the Nana , Haleigh river and North Carolina, she went back to work. And on August 26th , she was reporting live from Smith mountain Lake, do a story on an anniversary for the local of chamber of commerce. And a disgruntled former employee came up behind her and her photographer and a ambush them and shot and killed both Alison and her photographer, Adam Ward. And it devastated me. It devastated our families . Uh , Adam's family and the entire community that had watched her perform and had really also , uh , fallen in love with her because of her extraordinary ability on camera and how vivacious and energetic she was , uh, on television. And, and then we all collectively mourn together. And unfortunately, I just could not mentally and emotionally continue on at the station for much longer. I went back after a couple of weeks and stayed for another year and a half, but knew that there wasn't anything there for me anymore. And I had offers to go to other stations to move on with my television career. But I really felt like that was going to be my career progression anyway. And so to not take what happened to Alison and to me, you know, more so the relationship that she and I had together as a really profound change in my life and trying to make that a real marker, a milestone in my life. I thought that moving on to another station would be disrespectful of that. So I decided to do something new and different, but I wanted to stay in Southwest Virginia, in rural Virginia. I'm not from here originally, I'm from Philadelphia, but this is home for me and I wanted to do something where I could give back. You know, I really felt that at the local news level, I really was performing some amount of service to the community to inform them of the local issues that are going on. And I thought, what could I do that would still allow me to serve the public and kind of use some of the skills and abilities that I had as a broadcast journalist. And after Trump got elected in 2016 later, I was kind of thinking that, you know, now was probably the time where many people really needed to show their values and show their effort in a different way by getting actively involved in public service and by running for office. And the more that I thought about that, I thought that it would be the right thing to do. And so in February of 2017 I quit my job and ran for a local state representative seat, a house of delegates seat in the communities that I reported on and that Alison reported on and that we love so much.

JJ:

Yeah, we , we just had Andy Parker on the podcast. We had Allison's dad and he speaks so highly of you. It's very clear that he , he just adores you. And so he , he talked to us about Alison and about what had happened and what got him to join the gun violence prevention movement. But one of the things he told us was just a night that I guess you two were in a parking lot after an interview shortly after it happened and that you turned to him and were like, well, I'm running for office. This is gonna happen.

Chris Hurst:

Yeah, I had had, you know, it's weird. I, I, she and I talked about wanting to be a power couple. I think it's , I think part of it was ego driven. I think part of it was a real desire to serve our communities and be identifiable, especially in an area that doesn't have a lot of really identifiable leaders in it. And so we would drive around and think about ways that we could both work hand in hand to really leave our Mark and try and bring lasting, positive change to our communities. And it was also the time when house of cards was still a legitimate TV show before it went off the rails. And , uh, during that time we were watching house of cards and she, I think casually mentioned to me about wanting to be, you know, maybe a senator's wife one day. And I told her that how much would rather prefer being a senator's husband. And we talked about it jokingly. And so I guess that kind of all got suppressed in my subconscious. And then the first night that I went back to our apartment, the first night that Alison was killed, I stayed in a hotel because one, I left my keys down at the Lake. I mean , done an interview for Fox news. And then also, you know, all of the other stations, national stations wanted to interview me the next morning at , at the, at our local station. And so I stayed in a hotel right there across the street. But the next day I went back to our apartment and at night, you know, put my head on her pillow and wailed and cried into the pillow and just remember seeing, closing my eyes and seeing a campaign, you know, that kind of Robert Redford candidate campaign. And , um, you know, I think it was a bit delusional, but that was something where in the heat of the moment to , you know, the, the conversation Andy's referencing, I think all of us just wanted to wake up and be in a different reality where she was still with us and things were different. Um, and I couldn't shake this idea of wanting to do something larger, wanting to do something more grand than just sitting in the corner and having a pity party for myself and do something that might be able to show the community that was in mourning , that was really hurting along with me. That because of the person that Alison was and who she associated herself with and who she loved and made that, you know , we were strong, we were determined to not let anything slow us down or break us. And I felt that, you know, running a campaign, engaging with the same people that sent me cards and prayed for me and send us gifts and then to go and knock on their doors and ask for their vote and have us inspire each other. Seemed like thing that I would be interested in doing. But you know, I really went back and forth for a year and a half of what I wanted to do and was very tempted to move to other States and continue on with journalism, but always had this nine feeling of, you know, what happened to me and where it happened and the people who came to my aid afterward, I wasn't just going to pick that up and leave them behind and instead wanted to do something, you know , more for them, more tangible to try and improve their lives. And that led me to want to run for public office.

Christian:

Yeah. Yeah. And I, you know, I just think that you've done it so honorably and have followed through on all those promises in a way that you brought a ton of pride. You know, I think not only to the folks in the, in the 12th district that, you know, just love being represented by you. You know, you also, I think represent a broader coalition of survivors. You know, people who go through this ongoing pain that live with it every day, that you know, feel like their voices are also being represented in a way. And I think also, you know , one thing I don't want to be lost on here too is you decided to run in Blacksburg, Virginia, you know, against delegate Yoast , a really tough seat. And , uh , we don't want to lose sight of that in this election because I think people are so happy to have you there. But , um, I wonder, I mean it sounds like your, your motivations were pretty clear for Y. Uh , what was it like running in the district that clearly, you know, has a history of gun ownership, has a lot of varying opinions and varying views politically. What's it like representing such a, an interesting district?

Chris Hurst:

Well, it really is a microcosm for the entire state. It is the only seat held by a Democrat , uh , in Southwest Virginia. So you have to go to Charlottesville, which is a more than a hundred miles away in order to find, you know, another , um, a Democrat who is in a college town. I am kind of in a sea of red throughout all of the rest of the ninth congressional district, Southwest Virginia, South side, Virginia. So you can drive hours and hours and Sylvia and Virginia and not have any Democrat or represents you. And I think a lot of those , um, elected representatives really do run on very socially divisive issues, including guns and gun rights. But you know, here in Blacksburg we also have Virginia tech. And , uh, at the time in 2007, it was the worst mass shooting in us history. And so when I was knocking on doors two years ago, I would invariably talk to dozens of people who had been personally affected by what happened on August 16th of 2007. Either they had someone that they lost, a Jared Lane's mother lives in Giles County and got to know her over the course of the campaign. Giles counties in my district. You talked to professors who were colleagues of other professors who were shot and killed booma logon. Ethan's father was killed and she's a , in my district that I represent. And then you also talked to just the, the people of the town of Blacksburg, those who are counselors who took time off from work to stay on campus to provide extra counseling service for students. So like two administration who had to build the university back up after it had been shocked to its core. And so this community was profoundly impacted by gun violence, but then also showed a model of resiliency for how you can let something happen to you that is atrocious and awful and go through the stages of grief and healing, but ultimately come through and maybe be defined by it to always have that be something that's in the back of people's minds when they associate Virginia tech with something or associate me. But it doesn't have to destroy you. And Blacksburg, I think is a real embodiment of that. And that's why I think a lot of people were very encouraged and , and happy to see that this was the district that I wanted to represent.

JJ:

And when you end up running, you eventually end up winning. Spoiler alert to everyone out there who wasn't part of that. Right? But when you win , you win. You don't just win, you win against a successful three time incumbent. Uh , Joseph Yost who is backed has an a plus rating by the NRA and you win by a significant number of points. Nine, I believe. Right. So what, what, why do you think that was? Why do you think that Virginians overall were ready for yeah, for Chris Hearst , the Hearst sitting ,

Chris Hurst:

I still don't know if they're ready for , um, I think we outworked him. This was something that , uh, I mean, I gave up my career, I went to broadcast journalism school to be a journalist. I love doing it from the time I was in high school where we had a TV studio and I did the morning announcements and made a game show and a talk show, and then went to school for it and, and dove head first into everything having to do with television and then had a successful career doing it , uh, where I won awards and did , um , investigations and held powerful people accountable and also tried to, you know, engage with the community and tell future stories. I mean, I absolutely loved what I did and I gave it all up, lived in a basement apartment so that I, you know, could afford to do it cause I wasn't taking an income for about a year and you know, spent most of my savings and drew down a 401k. And so when you're confronted with all of those sacrifices, you're gonna work your ass off. And that's what we did. We, we outwork the guy we, and got initial attention because of the drama associated with me giving up that career to do this endeavor of just running for office. And so that gave us some initial momentum and then we just kept on carrying it forward. And the whole community really responded and rallied around it, including the college students at Virginia tech and Radford university that I represent. And I think they were really motivated, not only because of a personal story that I might have, but also their own personal experiences with gun violence. You know, now that we continue to live in this mass shooting era. And then also too, it was the first time that people had a chance to vote after Donald Trump got elected in 2016. And so that mobilized a , a hell of a lot of people to want to take back some sense of normalcy and civility. And we were able to get an incredible grassroots campaign going where our opponents simply was, I'm spinning his wheels and relying on funding from other, you know , Republican delegates and senators and in the speaker. And unfortunately, he just didn't run the kind of campaign necessary to run now in 2017 and in 2019 which has to be focused on knocking on doors and making individual conversations with people instead of just trying to buy a seat. Now we raised more than a million dollars, which is pretty astounding. The thing when being a delegate only pays six, $17,640 a year, but no basement apartment on that. Yeah , we , uh, we just did everything that was necessary in order to win because I wasn't, I just wasn't going to lose. I just refused to believe that. So that also included having to call up all of my friends and family all past , uh, supporters of other democratic candidates and , and do the whole call time thing that people may be familiar with. That is really unfortunate that it's a part of our political landscape. I'd love to see camp comprehensive campaign finance reform to prevent us from having to do that. But you know, they said this is what you need to do in order to win. And I said, I'll do whatever it takes. Yeah, yeah.

Christian:

Whatever it takes. You know, I just think that you have such a, an incredible story. I can remember hearing you sort of speak the first time at a campaign event after you had announced in just a scene , the transformation, cause it's very different. Uh, you know, I, I know you're, you're obviously a pro in speaking, in public and addressing, you know, your audience, but it's a completely different sort of , um, way that you have to carry yourself. And I , and I can remember, and I forget where we were in Northern Virginia, the first a campaign event that I went to, but I was just like, Oh man, that guy is going to be an elected official, you know, like, it was, it happened like instantaneous. So we're , we're really happy to have you there. I guess part of what I'm wondering is, you know, the calculation for it to be , uh, in state politics, you know, and especially , uh, you know, the desire to make a difference. And , and, and with, with specific regard to our, you know, you mentioned Donald Trump to our, to our issue. So many people focus on, you know, the federal elections and , and particularly , uh, who's running for president , uh, Virginia holds these elections off cycle. Uh , it's a reason why we need to pay attention to it, but why in particular should people care and why is it that , that people should be invested in, in state politics in general?

Chris Hurst:

Yeah. You know , unfortunately, I think impeachment has kind of derailed everything. Right ? Right. And that's why I feel like States have the ability whether you are a parttime legislature like we are in Virginia or full time , one like and other States that we can actually save lives in the interim. And something that hopefully with the democratic majority that we could get in Virginia and January, February, you know, make it an emergency so that as soon as that bill gets signed into law by our democratic governor, it would go into effect. Things like universal back Brown checks, extreme protective order laws. These don't just have to be federal policies even though we need to get there in the meantime individuals States can do the right thing to try and protect their citizens. And so there is a, again, a tremendous amount that state politics and state representatives can influence. And I was really motivated to run for state representative because it seemed kind of like I'm a Goldilocks position. Something where I could actually really feel like I was making a tangible difference but not something where I would have to navigate a quagmire like a Washington D C in order to try and get anything done. You know, in Virginia you can get legislation passed. I was able to get 15 bills signed into law over my first term, which is more than any other, a freshman , uh , delegate. Wow. Despite the blue wave election we had where there were 18 new people that [inaudible] we had in the general assembly. So none of those had to do with gun violence unfortunately, because that 51, 49 majority for the Republicans meant that all of these bills that we really feel like have evidence to back up their ability to save lives, get killed in this special subcommittee in the general assemblies , militia, police and public safety committee. And , uh, they're down on one afternoon and each patron for universal background checks or the red flag laws or a child access prevention laws or an assault weapons ban gets up there and testifies, gives their , you know, five minutes , uh, best pitch. Uh, and then quickly the committee chairman , uh , says, all right, who wants to talk three speakers for each side, each get two minutes, you know, go for it. And do we have a motion to kill the bill? All right . Is it seconded? Okay , your Bill's dead get outta here. And that's kind of way that it goes. But you know , with a democratic majority we would be able to get all of those bills passed by the house and Senate and just a few weeks I'm sure of that.

Christian:

Right, right. Yeah. I mean, and I feel like guns in particular has helped move the, the, the broader, you know , political landscape that, that, you know, you're talking about , uh, so far right. Over the years. And I think even in just the time that , um, that , uh, you know, we've been, you've been advocating in Virginia, things have changed radically and this election in particular is, is vitally important to take that next step. So that , um, you know, next time that we're talking to you and you're telling us about , um, the double digit number of bills that you've passed , uh, that there will be a gun bills included in there. Um, you know, I just think it's, it's this, this election is so important in that can't be overstated at all.

Chris Hurst:

No, I think that what you mentioned about having off off, off year elections in Virginia has been done purposefully to try and protect incumbents to try and , um, make sure that voter participation is very low. If we had our state legislative elections at the same time that we have presidential or U S Senate or congressional elections, you know , our turnout would be over 50% would mean that more people would be voting. And I think when more people vote, more democratic and progressive policies get enacted because more Democrats get elected. Um, but, and the presidential election in 2016, we had 70% voter turnout and the gubernatorial election on 20 , uh , 17, we had about 50% voter turnout. And in these , uh, off, off, off year elections where it's just the state Senate and state representatives, the state delegates and then local races, we'll be lucky if we get 35% turnout. And remember on half of people, half of people are , who are voting age are actually registered to vote. And so that means that, you know, if you do the math, a third of half is one sixth of people 18 and over are actually voting in all elections like we have 2019. And what does that mean in terms of who's actually deciding who should be empowered to make these very, very important decisions and enact these , uh , policies that can save lives. When I was running in 2017, I was considered not a tier one candidate, but a tier two candidate because of the difficulty of the race. I represent the most Republican district that still has a Republican in it right now. So my district is, you know , um , decidedly purple. Um, but yeah, was , that was about six to eight races two years ago that we were able to really make full investments in. Now we've been able to expand that to 24 to 35 races, which is really unbelievable.

JJ:

But I mean that's, I'm one , I mean one of the things that we try to do on this podcast, and I think one of the things that Brady tries to do is show that specifically on the gun violence issue. It's not a Republican, a Democrat, a libertarian I, big googly space, monster, whatever you prescribed to it. It's not one of those things. But we see particularly I think in the case of Virginia that gun violence has sort of, especially when it comes to legislation, been divided along party lines, which is a shame because you think this would be something that it'd be really easy to get bi-partisan buy in .

Chris Hurst:

Well now a whole bunch of Republicans are running as if they have been champions of, of gun violence prevention. You know, Tim Hugo up in [inaudible] , Virginia is the caucus chair for the Republican party in the house. And so if he really cared about gun violence, he could use his voice to try and affect change. You know, in the decades that he served in the general assembly and he hasn't done anything but now that he's in danger of losing his seat, he's trying to talk about how he's been this champion for common sense gun policies. We have a lot of candidates down in Virginia Beach who now because of the tragedy that happened down there, a gun violence is extremely important to voters , uh , where Republicans are trying to say why, what have supported this? I would have supported that if it had gone up for a vote, but it was their own party that prevented it from getting a vote in the front end , shut down the special session. Right. Um, yeah, a lot of disingenuous talking out of both sides of their mouth, phenomenons going on right now from a lot of these GOP candidates cause they're realizing that they have lost on this issue of gun violence prevention is now something that , uh , the electorate cares about, not just Democrats. Um , many Republicans that I knock on doors for say, you know, Chris, I don't agree with you on taxes or abortion or whatever. But yeah, we got to do something about these guns. And I don't understand why anybody needs an AR to go shoot deer. If they can't hit a deer with a , you know, with a 30, 30, then they really, you know, don't deserve to be going out and hunting. So I think we have a , the public sentiment on our side. Um, we have certainly the great candidates who are running hard on our side. Uh , we just need to continue to , um, really hammer home the message to people that elections do mad or that as much frustration people have with the electoral system overall feeling that nobody is going to do anything for them. That there really is a time, especially I think that we're in a , uh , an optimistic era as pessimistic as everything is right now. I'm optimistic that , um, so many people have decided to drop everything and run for office or drop everything and get involved with an advocacy organization or drop everything and go March in the women's March or join a climate strike that , um, we can move into an era of real activism to try and , uh, empower citizens to know and act more to , uh, change policy for the better. Uh, and the most foundational thing you can do in order to try and harness that power is to get out and vote. And I think many more people are really realizing that and are participating in that. And so I am concerned about that 35% voter turnout, but I think that we're going to be pleasantly surprised on election day that, that our voter turnout is going to be higher than that.

Christian:

Yeah. Yeah. Well, and just, I mean, the , and all the changes that you're describing is just, it's so important. It's so meaningful. I think , um, you know, hearing some of these people trying to a message that they are gun violence prevention advocates when they've really been obstacles or are things that we're just not gonna let them get away with. But I think that that change is, is really , um, you know, in , in tone and message. And what we're seeing is, is , uh, you know, emblematic of, of , um, what you are describing. You know, that people, the passion gap has closed, that people are educated, that gun owners, non gun owners alike , um , are coming to the table because they all want the, the violence and the killing to stop. Um, I think all of that is , is feeding into it. And then I think, you know, above all, I think , um, you know, people like you are, are helping create that change as well. And you know, I, for one and , and I know , uh , J J as well. And then just everybody over here, Brady is , or we're just so I'm happy to have , uh, people like you who are doing this for the right reasons, that are doing this for the betterment of the, of your constituents , um, that are also just trying to make the world a safer, better place. We're, we're, we're just lucky as hell to have ya , uh, where you are. So thank you for , um, everything that you are doing. Um, we will do everything we can to spread the message to , to get , uh , voters out to, to help make the Commonwealth a safer place as well. Um, because we just, we can't afford not to. So thank you for all that you do and thanks for joining us today, Chris.

Chris Hurst:

Well, I appreciate it guys, and I will say this , um , and I remember going to a , some survivor network events with, with you and with other people and immediately after Allison was killed and , uh, back in 2015, we had all come together, right? This idea of a lonely as club kind of been formed. But the idea was that I had is, okay , well what are we going to do with it? What are we gonna do? And there were a few of us who had decided to do something as a result of it , but now we're seeing it more and more and more and more and more [inaudible] more people who are a part of this club to be empowered to actually make a positive difference. So it's not just me, it's Tom Sullivan on Colorado. It's Lucy McBath, right in Georgia. Jennifer Longdon in Arizona. It's, yeah, it's so many other people who either decided to run for office, became involved in an advocacy group or started a nonprofit foundation or are trying to, you know, change the narrative , uh , in , uh , in the media like with Sandy hook promise. So , uh , there are so many different people now who we've been able to turn this from being a very lonely club to being a real army of friends and colleagues. And that to me is a wonderful progression we've seen over the last few years.

JJ:

Again, so grateful to like both of you for coming on and for being there, but I have to say I am really sad though that we're seeing this passion gap close in the U S as a result I think because if we're, if we're losing a hundred people a day that we're running out of people who haven't been touched by gun violence. Yeah, I mean I would have , I'm grateful that you're a fantastic politician. We need more of those is generally not the stereotype that that plays into, but I would be, I mean I'm exceptionally happy if you would come into this because of like a deep concern for animal welfare after finding a cat. You know?

Chris Hurst:

You know what we, what I have found is that part of the reason why this narrative is starting to change and why we have so much momentum on our side is that just to look at how many parents who previously didn't really give a crap about gun violence or gun violence prevention now have to answer questions from their children saying, well, mom and dad, why am I having to do an active shooter drill? Where I'm having to put a book bag in front of my face or pile on top of my other a students in a corner or get a huddled into a closet while my teacher has to barricade herself in front of it just during practice. Y a is my teacher having to be held hostage , uh , in a mock active shooter drill. Or now we're seeing that some schools are firing off shotguns with blanks and them, you know, this is creating much trauma for our children , uh , that it is creating a moral imperative for parents to get involved and to try and stop it. It is really difficult and frustrating to acknowledge that we don't really tackle major difficult policy until some kind of crescendo of people , uh, emerge that have been personally affected by it either directly or indirectly. And yet that's what's happened with gun violence. Uh , we have reached that point in the time to change is now , uh , I am sickened that it has taken this many years for us to get to this point. Uh , but we're here now and we need to do the right thing. And we need to be able to not only enact policies that will save lives from the vast majority of people who die from gun violence, from a gun suicide, from , uh, in our , uh, personal domestic violence from inner city violence for , uh, men, but particularly women of color or the trans community that is discriminated against and , and is at higher risk of, but then also trying to tackle the mass shooting phenomenon and being able to have all of us say that while we lived through the mass shooting phenomenon, we also live to see the end of the mass shooting phenomenon in this country.

Christian:

Yeah. And just , uh , for all the Virginians listening you , you've heard it time and time again, but we , you got an election on Tuesday. So, you know, get out, vote, get out to vote, talk to your friends and family , see what their plans are. How are they getting the poles ? Bring somebody along with you. Uh, why don't you , uh, make a blind date out of it and go show up and vote together. And then , uh , you know, go grab some coffee, whatever you need to do, get out and, and, and , and get those numbers up. So thanks so much Chris. Really, really appreciate your time.

JJ:

So now it's time for us. Well, I guess me Christian is going to react. I know what the story is. He doesn't to tell you listeners about the most unbelievable stories this week in gun violence news, except you should absolutely believe it because unfortunately it happened. Have you, have you girded yourself Christian? Yeah. Well, an unidentified man and Phoenix became angry at his upstairs neighbors for making too much noise, something that many of us can probably identify with. He first tried banging on their door around 11, 20:00 PM, but then returned to his apartment, apparently even more aggravated because he fired several shots from his gun into his ceiling. Horrific. Yes. But it came back to him to bite him in the butt, or perhaps I should say face because one of the bullets ricocheted and hit him in the face. Gosh. Although no one else was injured, he did have to go to the hospital. Yeah. Wow. So, you know.

Christian:

Yeah . It comes back around. What goes around comes around. I, you know, it's just

JJ:

so, I'm very sorry that he was injured. We don't like to see any [inaudible] .

Christian:

So was he like shooting up? Like they lived above him. He was trying, he was trying to put bullets. Their apartment. Yes. Feasibly. Okay. Yes. So

JJ:

here at Brady we would like to remind all of our listeners, don't shoot your gun indoors and certainly not at other people.

Christian:

Don't shoot that other people please. Yes. That's a, that's a good rule of thumb to have. Yeah. Like once again, don't shoot at people. I've been quite mad about neighbors making a lot of noise. Yeah , I've used a broom. You use a room? Yeah, I did not get hospitalized. It was, it was effective at maybe just like really being therapeutic more than anything. Yeah . But like if you're living in an apartment, you have a landlord. There are other channels too to go. I'm just saying also just have a conversation. There are numerous steps you can take before firing your firearm into . I think that's , that's probably the, the step you never take. So the, was he the good guy with the gun or the bad guy with the gun that stopped the, did he stop himself? He did. He was, he both, he was , he was showing her shooter.

JJ:

Now something else that is unbelievable, but is something that I think people can get to maybe first step as opposed to last step here, is that we saw true bipartisan efforts to end gun violence. And you know , that's something we don't want to be unbelievable something we want to be normalized. And so for that, this week's gun violence prevention heroes are doing their best to make that happen. And of course to end gun violence.

Christian:

Yeah. This week, we applaud a representative Mike Levin, who's a Democrat from California, representative Rodney Davis, who's a Republican from Illinois. Representative Brandon Boyle, who's a Democrat from Pennsylvania. The rep Elise, Steph phonic , who's a Republican from New York, a representative Kim Schrier , a Democrat from Washington and representative Mike Turner, who's a Republican from Ohio for the introduction of the bipartisan prevent family fire act.

JJ:

Yeah. Because everyday eight children and teens are unintentionally shot by an unsecured firearm and nearly 60 Americans die from suicide with a gun. These are facts and figures that we've talked about, I think a lot on this podcast because they are so devastating. So these three Republicans and these three Democrats, nice little family. Yup . Nice blended purple family came together to introduce legislation to help stop these very preventable shootings.

Christian:

Yeah. You know, I'm like , three out of five gun deaths in America are suicides. Uh , these folks have found a creative solution to come together, essentially trying to incentivize gun dealers , uh , to sell safes. Um, you know, we're not incentivizing the gun industry to make more guns. We're not incentivizing , uh, gun buyers to buy more guns. We're simply saying when people are coming into your shop to buy a gun, sell a safe with it, and let's, if we have to appeal to the capitalistic side of, of, of gun dealers to make that happen. Um, and we know that that can have a real impact to prevent family fire.

JJ:

We want to say thank you so much to these representatives for taking action and not sides. So if you have someone or a group or even yourself that you think are doing great in this gun violence prevention field and you want to highlight them, contact us at Brady united.org/podcast or via our social media at Brady buzz and you can win our gun violence prevention hero of the week, which means then you get to hear me rant about how awesome you are and maybe even Christian if he keeps beating JP for, I don't know if rants is the right word. Uh , beam beam my deaning yeah, you're being mean. We're beaming for some streaming. Aw, you're getting good at that. I think I'm trying

Brady music:

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Christian:

thanks for listening. As always, Brady's lifesaving work in Congress. The courts and communities across the country is made possible. Thanks to you. For more information on Brady or how to get involved in the fight against gun violence, please like and subscribe to the podcast. New full length episodes. Drop every Monday weekly wrap-ups drop on Fridays and minisodes come whenever we can fit them in. You can also get in touch with us@bradyunited.org or on social at Brady buzz. Be brave and remember, take actions, not sides and vote. Go vote. Go vote.

JJ:

Especially if you're in Virginia, but basically everywhere voting is good.

Brady music:

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