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Group rallies In Corvallis, Oregon for measures to stem gun violence

February 17, 2013

One of the steps we can do is work together to stop criminals and the mentally unstable from getting guns while protecting the rights of other citizens to freely own them.

— Betty Griffiths, Former Corvallis City Councilwoman

Corvallis-Oregon-02162013Amy Harding of Corvallis holds a sign during a rally held by the Mid-Willamette chapter of One Million Moms for Gun Control on Saturday morning at Central Park in Corvallis. Harding has three daughters aged 14, 12 and 10. (Andy Cripe | Corvallis Gazette-Times)

By CANDA FUQUA, Corvallis Gazette-Times

To legally drive a car, citizens must pass knowledge and driving tests, secure liability insurance and register the vehicle every year.

Purchasing a firearm, however, is a less involved process.

“Why is owning a gun more important than driving a car?” one activist asked the nearly 100 area residents who gathered Saturday morning at Central Park.

Participants at the rally, organized by the local chapter of One Million Moms for Gun Control, held signs with slogans like “Sensible gun laws now” and “Families for universal background checks.”

Speakers offered different anecdotes but had one overall message: Current gun legislation and the lack of mental health resources are allowing firearms to get into the hands of dangerous people.

Three Corvallis moms — Sarah Finger McDonald, Christy Anderson Brekken and Meghna Babbar-Sebens — organized the rally and formed the local chapter of the national grassroots campaign earlier this month in response to the Newtown shooting.

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