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Melissa DeFrancesco, a local group lead for the group Moms Demand Actions, which had a few people representing them with T-shirts, told a reporter that she came out to support Hearn’s initiative. “Lavander is a gun violence survivor and we support him… his message is about gun violence, not the Second Amendment.”
She also noted that Sunday is Bereaved Mothers Day, for those mothers whose children are dead.
While none of the demonstrators against gun violence Florida Today spoke to expressed themselves as being against the Second Amendment or backing any specific anti-gun measures, counter demonstrators felt differently.
“I am out here to support the Second Amendment because I believe it’s the only thing that is protecting our country right now,” said Maria Dockery of Melbourne who is President of the Femme Fatale Arms Ladies Gun Store and Training.
Expressing her view on how to deal with gun violence, Dockery said “enforce the laws on the books and don’t blame society for the actions of an individual who breaks the law.”
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Demonstrators against gun violence at a Melbourne rally were met Sunday by counterprotesters advocating for Second Amendment rights. (Photo: TIM SHORTT/ FLORIDA TODAY)
Melbourne City Councilmember Yvonne Minus, who organized previous town halls with area police chiefs to discuss law enforcement and street violence, said the Sunday anti-gun violence was not about the Second Amendment.
“It’s definitely not about taking away people’s guns, it’s about opposing the violence, that’s all,” said Minus, who was holding a sign that read “love conquers all.”
“We just need to stop the shooting… we’re just bringing attention to this,” she said.
The rallies come as Cocoa police investigate the shooting death of Albury early Saturday. Albury and his family had been planning to move out of Cocoa, his mother said.