Hi all. This week’s episode has a little different format than the others, as we don’t necessarily walk through someone’s day like we normally do.
I got the opportunity to interview Barbara Parker, mother of Alison Parker who was a news reporter who was fatally shot on live television in 2015.
With the Parkland shooting happening a few months ago at the time of this recording, I felt it was important to share and educate listeners (and myself) on what it’s like to be an advocate for sensible gun control.
Wherever your opinions lie on the spectrum of gun legislation I urge you to listen to this episode. We cover a lot of topics: What she means by her title as an advocate for sensible gun control, how her role as an activist has affected relationships in her life, how she was able to turn her grief into action, the biggest obstacles she faces while being an activist, what she would tell lawmakers and President Trump about gun control, and most importantly, actionable tips on how you can educate yourself on these issues and advocate for stricter gun laws.
As always, I’m very open to an honest, civil dialogue about any topic we talk about here on the Day in the Life podcast. If you want to share your thoughts on an episode or connect with other listeners, join our Facebook group to start a healthy discussion.
Honored that you’re listening and thankful for the support.
Barbara Parker | Advocate for Sensible Gun Legislation
In today’s episode, you’ll find out:
- Definition of what an advocate for sensible gun legislation is.
- How her role as a gun control activist has effected her relationships.
- How she was able to turn her grief into action.
- What she would say to members leading the NRA about gun control.
- What she wishes people knew about being a gun control activist.
- The biggest obstacles she faces in her activism work.
- Her response to people when they say it’s a mental health issue and not a gun control issue.
- How you can talk to friends and loved ones about gun control more openly.
- One thing she would tell lawmakers & President Trump about gun control.
- A moment that she feels her daughter would be most proud of during her activist work.
- Actionable steps people can take if they want to get more involved on enacting change with our current laws on gun control.
On August 26, 2015, the lives of Barbara and Andy Parker changed forever when their twenty-four -year-old daughter Alison, a journalist for WDBJ7 in Roanoke, Virginia, was murdered on live television. They vowed on national television to do “whatever it takes” to end gun violence in America. The phrase turned into a national rallying cry to fight for life-saving firearms policies, and since then they have traveled across the country to speak on behalf of ballot initiatives and pro “gun sense” political candidates. The Parkers have appeared on CNN, MSNBC, CBS, ABC, NBC, and international outlets, as well as writing opinion pieces for print media across the nation.
In February 2016 they established the For Alison Foundation, a not-for-profit organization dedicated to creating arts opportunities for children. Barbara Parker retired as Director of Programs for a museum in southern Virginia to run the foundation that honors her daughter as she lived – with a passion for the arts. http://www.foralison.org.
Key takeaways from this episode:
“I would love to say that we were advocates against gun violence forever but that’s not the case.” – Barbara Parker“We had a choice. We could curl up in the fetal position and hide or we could fight. And we chose the latter.” - Barbara Parker Click To Tweet
“ It’s not “we want to take your guns away.” It’s sensible gun legislation. It’s to save lives.” – Barbara Parker
“You can’t compare mental illness to anger.” – Barbara Parker
“A lot of organizations call us survivors and victims and I’m not either one. I’m a pissed off mom. My daughter’s life should not have ended this way.” – Barbara Parker“If you don't know who your legislators are, find out.” - Barbara Parker Click To Tweet
“I like to think that the Parkland students have really touched something that hasn’t been touched before. They aren’t intimidated by our legislators.” – Barbara Parker“I would ask people in the NRA, are you willing to allow your children to be collateral damage?” - Barbara Parker Click To Tweet
“I’m not trying to take away everybody’s guns. But we are trying to control who has access to guns.” – Barbara Parker
“I wish people knew that it’s fulfilling but also it’s mentally exhausting being a gun control advocate.” – Barbara Parker“We're not going away.” - Barbara Parker Click To Tweet
“We can all be the change.” – Barbara Parker
- Andy Parker’s Facebook page (Barbara’s husband)
- Everytown for Gun Safety
- Everytown for Gun Safety Facebook page
- Moms Demand Action
- Moms Demand Action Facebook page
- Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence
- Coalition to Stop Gun Violence Facebook page
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