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Dozens Demonstrate In Kansas City For Stricter Gun Laws

Dozens of Kansas Citians dressed in bright orange protested against gun violence on Sunday, the eve of the third anniversary of the deadly shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut.

The protesters lined the median along Ward Parkway outside the Country Club Christian Church. The event was part of activist group Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense In America's nationwide "Orange Walks." 

Emily Sullivan is the lead organizer for the Kansas City chapter of the group. She says she isn't against responsible gun ownership, but gun ownership by people who might be unstable.

"I don't think anyone really wants someone who has a domestic violence background to have a gun, or has committed a dangerous felony to have a gun," Sullivan said. "Let's do universal background checks for all gun sales, not just at dealers."

Sullivan says that she was deeply affected by the shooting at Sandy Hook, and has protested and organized ever since.

"I have a 6-year-old son, and I could see him sitting in one of those classrooms," Sullivan said. "I had this realization that, when I drop him off at school every day, I wonder if it's going to be the last time I see him."

Missouri and Kansas Grandparents Against Gun Violence co-founder Judy Sherry also made it out to the demonstration. She says more and more residents are fed up with gun laws.

"This is a cause that people are passionate about," Sherry said. "Ninety percent of the public supports background checks. Where are our legislators? Where they need to be is gone."

The protest came just a few weeks after Missouri Republican senators Bob Dixon and Brian Munzlinger pre-filed legislation for 2016 seeking to allow citizens to concealed carry weapons on college campuses.

Cody Newill is a reporter for KCUR 89.3. You can reach him on Twitter @CodyNewill or send him an email at cody@kcur.org.

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