‘Bands and Ballots’ Designed to Expand Understanding of Gun Violence
By JOHN GREGG, Correspondent, Tampa Bay Reporter
The event, sponsored by March For Our Lives, sends the message that gun violence is not a partisan issue.
TAMPA – Parkland survivor David Hogg is scheduled to be a featured speaker during an anti-gun violence concert in Tampa.
The Sept. 15 Bands and Ballots concert event is set for 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. in Curtis Hixon Park, 600 N Ashley Drive. Organized and hosted by the Tampa chapter of March For Our Lives, Bands and Ballots is billed as “a nonpartisan voter information concert to expand the dialogue on gun violence.” Hogg, a gun-control activist, is one of the founders of the national March For our Lives movement.
Organizers of the Tampa event said they hope to “lighten the mood of politics in Tampa Bay and encourage understanding of gun violence from all political angles,” and welcome all members of the community regardless of political affiliation or personal beliefs.
“Gun violence is more often than not perceived to be a partisan issue, but gun violence isn’t a matter of political preference. It affects everybody,” said Macy McClintock a head organizer for March For Our Lives Tampa and a senior at Robinson High School.
“We want people to realize that, no matter their political affiliation, they can get involved to end the epidemic. I believe the best way to bring people together is through music and that Bands and Ballots can help people become more informed in how gun violence can be fixed on both a legislative and a grass-roots level.”
Other scheduled speakers are Brendan Duff, March For Our Lives communications strategist; Sofie Whitney, a 2018 Marjory Stoneman Douglas graduate; Mayra Alvear, whose daughter, Amanda, was a victim of the Pulse Nightclub shooting; and Khary Penebaker, an Everytown Survivor Fellow and Democratic National Committee representative for the state of Wisconsin.
Organizers are working to add local and state politicians to the bill.
As is the case with all March For Our Lives events, voter registration will be a key element at Bands and Ballots, with volunteers from Headcount to be on-site to register concert-goers.
Headcount is, according to their website, a “nonpartisan organization that works with musicians to promote participation in democracy.” It has registered 500,000 voters since 2004 and has Bob Weir of the Grateful Dead among their board directors.
Artists scheduled to perform are
- Tomorrow’s News – The event’s headliners are a five-piece band of professionally-trained musicians from Plant High School who play alternative rock.
- Sean McKinley – A singer who is also a teaching assistant and clinical psychology PhD student at the University of South Florida.
- 76 Cut Short – A middle school, all-girl band formed out of Girls Rock Camp St. Pete who perform both cover songs and originals.
- Nathalie Hernandez – A Berklee School of Music graduate who sings reggae, R&B and soul and was a contestant on Season 3 of the Voice.
- Eden Shireen – A singer-songwriter from Land O’Lakes who was a 2015 Florida Grammy Showcase finalist.
- John Clark Band – A politically active folk-rock outfit who play acoustically-driven music with socially conscious lyrics.
- James Cole – A 16-year-old singer, songwriter and producer who is also president of the Tampa NAACP Youth Council.
The concert will include booths from an array of non-profits and gun control advocacy groups including Moms Demand Action For Gun Sense In America, Students Demand Action, Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, Team Enough, We the Students and Fired Up Pinellas. Food carts will also be on-site.
Bands and Ballots is a free event, but organizers are encouraging concert-goers to register by clicking here.
Organizers have also set up a Go Fund Me campaign to help pay for concert expenses.
Photo shows David Hogg.
David Hogg | Bands and Ballots | Gun Control | Gun Violence | Events Near Me | Tampabay News
#DavidHogg #BandsandBallots #GunControl #GunViolence #EventsNearMe #TampabayNews