Bishop T. Larry Kirkland, Chair, Commission on Publications
The Reverend Dr. Johnny Barbour, Jr., Publisher
The Reverend Dr. Calvin H. Sydnor III, the 20th Editor, The Christian Recorder
The Christian Recorder News Break – AME Church - Observing Wear Orange on Thursday, June 2, 2015:
OBSERVING WEAR ORANGE ON JUNE 2nd
While the events of June 17th give the AME Church every reason to work ceaselessly to end senseless gun violence, we were already attentive to that agenda since 2008 and more intensively since 2012. Our work is not yet done, since Congress has declined to enact reasonable precautions in legislation. There is hope yet, before President Obama leaves office and yet another opportunity to join a coalition observing Wear Orange on June 2nd.
See the information appended below: Each Episcopal District, local church, and organization/group should change the contact information and add quotes, then send it out from them. Some other tools are appended: 1) Resolution of AME Supervisors, WMS, and AME Social Action Commission; 2) Talking Points for Wear Orange; 3) Sample Q&A
It's a movement led by our young adults and all support will hopefully make a huge difference as the Senate deliberates with a real possibility of passing some credible legislation before President Obama leaves office.
A.M.E. CHURCH PARTNERS WITH THE “WEAR ORANGE” CAMPAIGN FOR NATIONAL GUN VIOLENCE AWARENESS DAY ON JUNE 2
"Wear Orange" Inspired by Chicago Teens Who Refused to Be Silent in the Face of Daily Gun Violence
Los Angeles—The African Methodist Episcopal Church announced today a partnership with the Wear Orange campaign (www.WearOrange.org) for the second annual National Gun Violence Awareness on June 2. Led by the AME Episcopal Supervisors Council and the international Women’s Missionary Society, in partnership with the Social Action Commission, the A.M.E. Church joins the more than 300 influencers, corporations, mayors, partner organizations and a series of iconic landmarks across the country already on board to Wear Orange on June 2.
The AME Church’s participation will include urging members and friends of its 6,000 congregations to WEAR ORANGE, take time to talk about senseless gun violence, and make a commitment to contact elected officials at all levels of government in order to enact and strengthen gun control. Participants are urged to engage by tweeting, e-blasting, phone banking.
The A.M.E. Church felt the anguish, pain and loss because of gun violence in the aftermath of the senseless killing of the 9 disciples at Mother Emanuel AME Church in Charleston, SC barely one year ago, on June 17th. Rekindling its 2013 initiative, AME Episcopal Supervisors’ President, Dr. Pam DeVeaux has urged that all of the resources of the AME Church are summoned to eliminate the misuse and abuse of guns that have resulted in senseless acts of violence. Mrs. Shirley Reed, President of the church’s Women’s Missionary Society is requesting its 800,000 membership base to heed urgings of the AME Social Action Commission and take action to advocates for common sense gun control.
“What started on the South Side of Chicago has quickly grown into a national movement with incredible support from partners all over the country,” said Jason Rzepka, director of cultural engagement at Every town for Gun Safety, a Wear Orange partner organization. “The energy behind Wear Orange is a testament to the young people who started it, but also to the hundreds of influencers, organizations, and corporate partners that have joined the millions of Americans who believe there is more we all can do to save lives from gun violence.”
Wear Orange was inspired by friends of Hadiya Pendleton, a 15-year-old Chicago high school student killed by gunfire, who decided to honor her life by wearing orange – the color hunters wear in the woods to protect themselves and others. On June 2, 2015, what would have been Hadiya’s 18th birthday, more than 200 organizations and influencers asked people nationwide to join them by wearing orange to honor her life, the lives of the more than 90 Americans killed by gun violence and the hundreds more who are injured every day. President Obama, Julianne Moore, Russell Simmons, Sarah Silverman, the New York Mets, MTV, Cosmopolitan, Motown Records, Michael J. Fox, Questlove and Katie Couric are just a few of those who answered the call last year, helping the #WearOrange message reach more than 220 million people in a single day.
Full details on Wear Orange 2016 available here.
About Wear Orange
In 2013, a small group of teens at a South Side Chicago high school asked their classmates to honor the life of their murdered friend Hadiya Pendleton by wearing orange – the color hunters wear in the woods to protect themselves and others and a color that reflects the value of human life. They inspired the Wear Orange campaign (wearorange.org), a coalition of more than 200 non-profits, cultural influencers and elected officials working to reduce gun violence in America. Spearheaded by Every town for Gun Safety, the campaign asks Americans who believe we can do more to save lives from gun violence to do one simple thing on June 2, National Gun Violence Awareness Day: Wear Orange. Those who wear orange pledge to honor the lives of Americans stolen by gun violence, to help keep firearms out of dangerous hands and to protect our children from gun violence. Wear Orange has already reached more than 220 million people worldwide and is fast becoming the symbol of the gun violence prevention movement.
Description of the partners' participation: employees wearing orange and sharing on social media? Social media content using hashtag? Changing logos to orange? Etc.
Q: Isn't this just an anti-gun thing?
No, this is a gun violence prevention thing. Wear Orange is a campaign dedicated to honoring the lives of those affected by gun violence and elevating gun violence prevention efforts nationwide—and that includes working with gun owners and non-gun owners alike. We are dedicated to working together to promote proven solutions and a culture that saves lives.
Orange isn’t about politics or a debate or “choosing sides” – it’s about ending gun violence and saving lives.
Q: Why Orange?
Orange is a color that symbolizes human life. It’s the color hunters where in the woods to protect themselves and other hunters from harm. It’s a color that pays tribute to hunting culture and America’s proud heritage of responsible gun ownership.
Wear Orange was inspired by a group of Chicago teens who asked their classmates to commemorate the life of their murdered friend, Hadiya Pendleton, by wearing orange—the color hunters wear to protect themselves in the woods. And today, Wear Orange aims to inspire more people to join the movement to save American lives from gun violence.
Q: Isn't Orange the color of (insert other cause)?
Yes, orange is a color used by many causes including bullying prevention and dating abuse just as other colors represent multiple issues as well---for example, domestic violence and Alzheimer’s both showcase the color purple for their work.
For gun violence prevention, the color has such meaning and connection to the cause it’s a color that symbolizes human life (see Q 2 for more).
Q: What are the solutions to gun violence Wear Orange and Wear Orange partner support?
As coalition partners, artists, cultural, influencers, city officials, mayors, law enforcement, faith leaders, survivors, teachers, moms, and other advocates in cities all over the country from Los Angeles to New Orleans to Chicago, each is working on this issue in their own unique way.
From working to keep guns out of the hands of criminals, domestic abusers and the dangerously mentally ill, to protecting domestic violence victims, to working on suicide prevention, to community-based programs in our cities, to thinking through public health solutions, to talking with their families, friends and colleagues about how this issue is something we can work together to see improve—there is not just one way to approach this critical issue.
And although there isn’t just one solution that will end all gun violence— we know that by working together, we can help accelerate proven solutions that save lives from gun violence, plus create a safer future for our communities and country.
Q: How does wearing orange save lives/What good does wearing orange on one day really do?
June 2 is about inspiring hope and building a shared sense in our communities that we can do more to prevent gun violence. This about more than just wearing orange and attending an event—it’s about bringing together millions Americans who are dedicated and passionate about creating a safer future.
Further, Wear Orange is a demonstration of the breadth, diversity, passion and power of the gun violence prevention movement. It also reaches million of people nationwide, helping to grow the movement and increase the urgency of addressing gun violence in America NOW.
Q: How can someone get involved?
There are is vast number of ways—big and small—that people can get involved in the movement to save lives from gun violence. Check out the website www.wearorange.org, use the event finder tool to locate tings happening in your community on June 2, join a local gun violence prevention group, pay attention to the gun laws in your state and the things happening locally for you.
And today on June 2—we invite everyone who believes there is more we can do to save lives from gun violence in America to do one simple thing, wear orange- a color that symbolizes the value of human life—on National Gun Violence Awareness Day and share that loudly on your social networks using the hashtag #WearOrange.
Q: What are the partners/celebs/etc., actually doing?
From wearing and sharing the #WearOrange message on social media to spreading the wear orange message to their viewers and their networks, to attending lighting ceremonies for key landmarks going orange to marching across bridges to picnics, concerts, movie screenings, you name it. The activities happening on June 2 really represent the full creativity of the Wear Orange campaign and its supporters. Check out the website for more information or follow the#WearOrange to see what folks are doing all over the country!
Talking Points for Wear Orange:
Wear Orange is a campaign dedicated to honoring the lives of those affected by gun violence and elevating gun violence prevention efforts nationwide.
Wear Orange and National Gun Violence Awareness Day was inspired by a group of Chicago teens who asked their classmates to commemorate the life of their murdered friend, Hadiya Pendleton, by wearing orange—the color hunters wear to protect themselves in the woods.
On June 2nd, 2015, what would have been Hadiya’s 18th birthday, a broad‐based coalition launched the first National Gun Violence Awareness Day, and asked people nationwide to honor Hadiya’s life – and the lives of the more than 90 Americans killed by gun violence every day and the hundreds more who are shot and survive – by wearing orange.
Originating in hunting culture, the color orange pays tribute to America’s proud heritage of responsible gun ownership. Orange hunting gear saves countless lives each year. And Wear Orange aims to inspire those who think we can do more to save lives from gun violence to get involved with any one of the more than a hundred non-profit partners in the Wear Orange coalition.
Orange isn’t about politics, the “gun debate” or “choosing a side” – it’s about ending gun violence and saving lives.
Last year more than 200 noteworthy individuals and organizations, including President Obama, Julianne Moore, MTV and Motown Records answered the call, taking to social media to show their support and as a result, #WearOrange reached more than 220 million people in a single day. And this year promises to reach much, much further—the skyline is the limit.
This year already—more than 300 influencers, corporations, partner organizations and a series of iconic landmarks including the Empire State Building will be participating in the second annual National Gun Violence Awareness Day on June 2 and spreading the Wear Orange message. And there will be events, Orange meet-ups, in more than 150 cities nationwide.
As coalition partners, artists, cultural, influencers, city officials, mayors, law enforcement, faith leaders, survivors, teachers, moms, and other advocates in cities all over the country from Los Angeles to New Orleans to Chicago, we are coming together to inspire hope—that we can create a future free from gun violence.
We are here with a shared sense of a crisis around the fact that gun violence ravages too many American families and neighborhoods, especially in urban areas, and has disproportionally affects communities of color. We are dedicated to working together to promote solutions and a culture that does in fact, save lives.
There is not one solution that will end all gun violence. But we know that by working together, we can grow this movement -- bringing in many more people and added resources that will help save lives and create a safer future.
To help honor the more than 90 Americans shot an killed every day—and the hundreds more injured, the Wear Orange campaign partners invite everyone who agrees we can do more to save American lives from gun violence to do one simple thing: #WearOrange -- a color that symbolizes the value of human life—on June 2, National Gun Violence Awareness Day.
Bishop Reginald T. Jackson, Social Action Commission Chair
Mrs. Jacqueline DuPont Walker, Consultant/Director