Welcome to english.eastday.com.Today is
Follow us @
Contribute to us!











Home >> auto >> Article
U.S. residents celebrate first community gathering with hopes for curbing gun violence in wake of fatal mass shootings
From:Xinhua  |  2019-08-07 19:31

Video PlayerClose

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 6 (Xinhua) -- Residents in a U.S. city in Northern California Tuesday showed up to celebrate the first community-building gathering after a series of deadly mass shootings around the country, with high hopes for a secure neighborhood without gun violence.

Like in many other cities and states in the United States, residents in Millbrae city, about 25 km south of San Francisco, came out with their families and children to celebrate the first National Night Out for a community-wide gathering after two mass shootings over the weekend killed at least 29 people and injured over 50 others.

The massacre occurred in El Paso in Texas state and Dayton in Ohio state, more than a week after a gunman shot and killed three people, including a six-year-old boy and a 13-year-old girl in Gilroy city, Northern California on July 28.

While the Millbrae residents enjoyed a pleasant time featuring food, music, games, and face paint at the National Night Out event, an annual campaign celebrated on the first Tuesday of August to promote community-police relations and safe neighborhoods, many of them also voiced their concerns over rising gun-related violence in the country and hoped government officials would take serious measures to contain gun crimes.

Veronica Williams, a tech company engineer, said the shootings in Texas and Ohio were "horrible" and would definitely impact many other people in the country psychologically.

"No one would like to see a gunman like that in our community," she said.

Robert Gottschalk, a former Millbrae mayor and a long-time resident of the city, said it's great to see so many young people at the community gathering.

But he also expressed worries about rising reports of crime in the city. "We've had too many auto burglaries (and) home burglaries," he said.

Compared with other Bay Area cities, Millbrae may not be terribly bad, he said, "but it's bad enough. I mean one is too many."

Millbrae Mayor Wayne Lee told Xinhua that he wanted residents to come out and spend time together, despite the mass shootings in other U.S. cities.

"Don't let (bad) people change your life. That's what they want. They want to change your life, and they want to scare you away," he said, adding the city and the sheriff's department will take maximum measures including the use of technology to ensure community safety.

He said he supported gun control to curb gun-related crime, and he also stood for enhancing background checks if people want to own guns.

He voiced opposition to high-power assault rifles being able to kill people. "I don't agree with guns with big magazines that have automatic features," he said.

Paul Kunkel, chief of the Millbrae police department, told Xinhua National Night Out is a campaign to cement the bond and trust between the community and police.

"It doesn't have anything do to with the ugliness (that) has happened recently, but I think that kind of thing really makes the point that we need to do more in building relationships," he said, suggesting that the recent mass shootings show the need of giving the community more confidence in law enforcement officers.

"We take it very seriously, and we're doing as much as we can to prevent that kind of event here," he said.