Below is a statement from Rev. Dr. Susan Frederick-Gray, President of the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), regarding the shooting in Monterey Park, California. A man with a gun killed 10 people who were celebrating the Lunar New Year at a dance studio there.
As so many Americans do, I grieve with the community in Monterey Park, California and send them deep care and support from our Unitarian Universalist Association community. I pray for all of the victims of this devastating act of violence, and the families and loved ones of the 10 people who were killed, and the wider community suffering in the midst of this grievous loss.
I am especially mindful of the additional fear and heartbreak that reverberates as this incident happened during the joyous celebrations of the Lunar New Year in Monterey Park and around the world. It also occurs amid increasing threats and acts of violence targeting Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) communities across this country. No neighborhood or community should have to experience this kind of fear and violence. All people should feel safe to celebrate among friends and family.
While we do not know what motivated the suspect, who is now dead by his own hand, we are aware that easy access to guns remains a serious problem in this country. Unfortunately, too many American communities can relate to the grief that Monterey Park is experiencing because they, too, have experienced too many lives lost, wounded, and permanently altered because of gun violence.
As I said last year, after the Uvalde massacre, it does not have to be this way. Our leaders must act. Unitarian Universalists (UUs) are ready to work with elected and community officials to support responsible gun legislation measures.
Fundamental to who we are as UUs are the beliefs in the inherent worth and dignity of every person and the goals of peace, liberty and justice for all. These core values are part of the Seven Principles that every UU community affirms. We mourn with the people of Monterey Park and we remain in solidarity with the AAPI community across this nation.