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Statement on City’s Violence by Rev. Lewis W. Stewart

Editorial by Reverend Lewis W. Stewart, President of United Christian Leadership Ministry of Western, New York, Inc.

Rev. Lewis Stewart, president of UCLM. Photo by Tyronda James/Minority Reporter Media Group.

The gun violence that almost killed three children; two 3-year-olds, and a one-year old and two adults is a problem, a sickness, we can no longer tolerate as a community.

Too many people are dying because criminals have access to guns, and without morality and conscience are causing a wave of fear to overwhelm us.

Not only is the violence from guns and car jackings but also sexual predators. A teenage girl was raped the other day at a store.

I have had several family members die of gun violence. It is a trauma and disease which has impacted us all. We need real hard solutions to address this problem.

Marches and prayer vigils, although they raise awareness, will not solve this issue of gun violence in the long run.

  • We need people who are willing to come forward and identify perpetrators.
  • Individuals caught with illegal weapons must be remanded to jail immediately.
  • Shooters and predators must be prosecuted.
  • Those possessing illegal weapons must have longer sentences imposed on them.
  • An anti-violence curriculum must be a part of the educational curriculum in the Rochester City School District.
  • We must also deal with issues of bullying and trauma.
  • Address and eliminate entrenched poverty.
  • Focus on the creation of jobs.

We must begin somewhere. It’s going to take all of us from every sector to combat crime and violence.

For further information, please contact Rev. Lewis Stewart at (585) 402-9785.