On this Mother's Day we remember our moms and say a special prayer to those moms who have lost their children. After morning cuddles with my Isabella, I went to San Francisco City Hall this morning to join the Healing Circle to connect with moms who have lost children to gun violence.
"We will get between our kids and guns any way we can," I told them. "The attention on the tragedy of Newtown gives us the opportunity to shine a light on gun stories in all neighborhoods. Newtown showed the nation that you can't 'other' this away. You can't say 'this only happens in black neighborhoods or poor neighborhoods or to people out walking dark streets alone at night.' This can happen anywhere. So we must value every life and mourn every life equally - democratize the hope and democratize the solutions. We must get between our kids and guns with love, with safety, with opportunity, with hope, with actions to address the root causes."
"It hurts me when I hear someone call out 'Mom' on the street because I know it will never be for me" said one Healing Circle mother who lost a child to an unsolved gun homicide.
"I lost four babies to guns," said another mother who came despite declining health to our sweltering sunny gathering through a van service whose driver agreed to stay and pray so that she could join hands in a Healing Circle. Person after person talked about the scourge of gun violence and the need for healing. "My boy was working to bring down the gangs and he was gunned down himself" said a mother holding a photo of her boy wearing a Cesar Chavez tee-shirt. That young man is organizing with Cesar in heaven, and here on earth as another gun violence victim -- President John F Kennedy -- said, "God's work must truly be our own."
Part of that work is political action that our representatives, including my mother Nancy Pelosi, do in Washington, and most is the community work that we must do here at home. For me, that community work includes our project with the San Francisco Interfaith Council "Building Bridges to Reduce Gun Violence"
http://sfinterfaithcouncil.org/Monthly_breakfast.html to shine a light on the people and the organizations that address root causes of poverty, crime, anger, and hunger for which guns are an accelerator.
On Mother's Day we are conscious that we are living for the generations who came before us -- our grandmothers and great grandmothers who only dreamed of the possibilities we have today. But we are also living for the generations we lost -- for the children millions of parents have had to bury all too soon.
"This isn't a club any mother wants to join" said one grieving mom today. As we celebrate our moms and mother figures, let us resolve to get between our kids and guns any way we can, so that fewer mothers have to suffer next Mother's Day.