ESPAÑOLA, N.M. — The New Mexico chapters of Moms Demand Action and Student Demand Action, both part of Everytown for Gun Safety’s grassroots network, released the following statement in response to a shooting at a rally in Española, New Mexico where people were protesting the controversial Juan de Oñate statue. According to initial reporting, a Native American man was shot and wounded by a man wearing a Make America Great Again hat. The shooter was taken into custody and the victim is currently being treated at a local hospital. This is the second shooting at a protest to relocate the statue. In 2020, the extremist militia group New Mexico Civil Guard (NMCG) sparked violence at a protest in Albuquerque, leading to a protester being shot and wounded.
“We are outraged by this hate-fueled shooting and are praying for a swift recovery of the victim and his community,” said Becky Cox, chapter lead with the New Mexico chapter of Moms Demand Action. “Hate has no place in New Mexico. We are recommitted to fighting to disarm extremists.”
Everytown and the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project (ACLED) have published research showing that demonstrations where individuals are armed are more likely to be violent or destructive. The U.S. faces a confluence of dangerous challenges from white supremacists, anti-government militias, and other armed groups and individuals of the extreme right that seek to perpetrate violence, spread conspiracies, traffic in hate speech, and engage in armed intimidation. Guns and gun rights are central to many extreme-right groups and individuals. These individuals and groups are often motivated by conspiracy theories, violent rhetoric, and hate. Failure to address this threat will lead to the continued growth of extremist groups and violent incidents.
In an average year, 492 people die and 618 are wounded by guns in New Mexico. With a rate of 23.4 deaths per 100,000 people, New Mexico has the 6th-highest rate of gun deaths in the US. More information on gun violence in New Mexico is available here.