'Moms' take to Capitol steps to protest guns - MyFoxAustin.com | KTBC Fox 7 | News, Weather, Sports

'Moms' take to Capitol steps to protest guns

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The shooting tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary in Connecticut really struck a chord with Austinite Hilary Whitfield.

"For me, the Newtown tragedy really hit home. Because I grew up in Connecticut and because I have a first grader. And I know that town, I know Newtown. It's just like where I grew up and it's a safe place...it was...and if it can happen there it can happen anywhere. And it has to stop happening," Whitfield said.

That's why Whitfield started the Austin chapter of One Million Moms for Gun Control.

The group is rallying for an assault weapons ban, universal background checks for gun purchases and limits on current gun laws on the state level.

Whitfield says she's completely against the recently proposed "Open Carry" bill for Texas.

"I don't want to walk around in a culture of fear. I'm sorry, but guns are scary to me and if I see someone with a gun, that infringes on my right to feel safe," Whitfield said.


Vietnam Veteran Chris Frandsen is not even a fan of concealed carry.

"We should be civilized where we don't have to worry about having to carry a gun. And I believe we are a civilized society and that we don't need to carry a gun. I think it's all people's egos or wanting to get through the metal detector at the Capitol without having to go through it," Frandsen said.

Others at today's gun control rally had painful memories to share.

"I lost my 30-year-old beautiful sister to a burly young man who entered my parent's home where my sister was living and attacked her. She fought him and he shot her in the head," said Judith Johnson.

Meanwhile, a long line of cars piled in and out of Saturday's gun show at the Travis County Expo Center.

We asked gun owner John Alcalar what he thinks about protests like the Million Mom rally.

"I don't believe it's the guns. I believe it's the people just doing it that...need help," Alcalar said.

Hilary Whitfield tells us there are about 40,000 members of the Million Moms group nationwide and they're hoping many more will join in here in the Austin area.

You can find them where it all started...on Facebook.

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