This piece first appeared on The Sisterhood blog at The Forward.
Before December 14, 2012, Sara Smith Smirin, who lives in California’s Silicon Valley, had no plans to fly the next month to Washington, D.C. However, the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School that day induced her to make the trip to the nation’s capital on January 24 to witness Senator Dianne Feinstein of California introduce the Assault Weapons Ban of 2013, a bill to stop the sale, transfer, importation and manufacturing of military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition feeding devices.
Smirin, Director of Marketing for Jewish LearningWorks in San Francisco, was in Washington as a representative of Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense in America, a grassroots organization that sprang up and into action at lightning speed following Sandy Hook. After initially connecting with other moms in her community to establish a local chapter of the organization, Smirin quickly assumed a leadership role on the national level.
“It started with a bunch of moms talking to one another and saying they were not going to take it anymore,” Smirin, who has two young sons, told The Sisterhood by phone. The movement, which began as a Facebook group created by a woman named Shannon Watts in Indianapolis, has gone viral, amassing almost 100,000 supporters in just two months.
Click here to read more and watch a video.
© 2013 Renee Ghert-Zand. All rights reserved.