PeaceWorks Rochester

Turning guns into gardening tools

Description: Come watch Shane Claiborne and Michael Martin Beat a Gun into a Gardening Tool
Thursday, April 18, 6:00pm
Greece Baptist Church
1230 Long Pond Road, Rochester, NY 14626

The Beating Guns Tour is a 90-minute event that will feature music, art, and stories of people impacted by gun violence, culminating with an invitation for the audience to take the hammer and transform a gun into garden tools. The tour kicks off on March 9 in Philadelphia, stopping in more than 35 cities. Claiborne and Martin have also launched the Disarming Network to help people connect with safe spaces to disable guns according to Federal ATF guidelines.

With less than 5 percent of the world’s population, the people of the US own nearly half the world’s guns. America also holds the record for the most gun deaths—homicide, suicide, and accidental gun deaths—at around ninety a day and about thirty-three thousand per year.

Inspired by the biblical prophets’ call to “beat swords into plowshares,” Claiborne and Martin will tour the country this spring with a forge and other blacksmithing tools.

Claiborne and Martin build their case with a revealing overview of the history of guns and gun marketing in America, alarming statistics, and stories of devastated lives and restorative justice. They debunk common myths and offer ideas for common sense change. They address:

• Fear in America: Americans cling to their guns, ready to kill their neighbor at the slightest sense of fear. This has created a world in which a homeowner answers his door with a gun and shoots at a 14-year-old boy who stops to ask directions after missing his school bus.

• Corporate Accountability: The industry that creates one of the most dangerous products available enjoys total immunity when it comes to any responsibility for harm done.

• Millions of Guns in America: An average of just under 9.5 million guns are manufactured per year here—25,912 guns per day. Though there’s almost one gun per person in the U.S., only 32 percent of households have guns. “Some folks have a lot of guns.”

• Gun Capitalists: Businessmen invented the gun market, “making guns as commonplace as sewing machines.” The early gun empire families were motived by money and “moral agnosticism.”

• Forgotten Victims: An estimated 73,000 people per year are shot and survive, many of them injured in life-altering ways.

• The Changing NRA: Less than 5 percent of gun owners belong to the NRA. A recent survey found that 74 percent of NRA members support universal background checks on all gun sales, compared to 84 percent of guns owners in general and 90 percent of Americans.

• Gun Control Myths: The idea that any gun control measure will lead to all guns being taken is just one myth the authors debunk. “Banning semiautomatic weapons or high capacity magazines that allow guns to shoot one hundred rounds per minute does not lead to taking away hunting rifles or even a handgun purchased for self defense.”

Tired of waiting for legislative action on common sense gun laws, Claiborne and Martin say “we will not wait on politicians to turn death into life.”

About the Authors:

Shane Claiborne is a prominent speaker, activist, and best-selling author. Shane worked with Mother Teresa in Calcutta, and founded The Simple Way in Philadelphia. His books include Red Letter Revolution, and his classic The Irresistible Revolution. He has been featured in a number of films including “Another World Is Possible” and “Ordinary Radicals.” Shane speaks over one hundred times a year, nationally and internationally. His work has appeared in Esquire, SPIN, and The Wall Street Journal, and he has been on everything from Fox News and Al Jazeera to CNN and NPR. He’s given academic lectures at Harvard, Princeton, Liberty, Duke, and Notre Dame.

Mike Martin is the founder and executive director of RAWtools, which partners with communities in an effort to repurpose weapons for creative and productive uses. Mike learned to blacksmith in order to turn guns into garden tools and is passionate about connecting people to nonviolent skills like restorative justice and conflict mediation. He is trained for restorative justice facilitation and encourages everyone to explore how they can connect to similar efforts in their community. He blogs at Beating Guns will be his first book.

Beating Guns: Hope for People Who Are Weary of Violence
by Shane Claiborne and Mike Martin
Brazos Press
$19.99 paper ISBN: 978-1587434136
Pub Date: March 5, 2019
Beating Guns

Contact: Steve Gretz 585-301-8917
Location: Greece Baptist Church 1230 Long Pond Road, Rochester, NY 14626
Date: Thursday, April 18, 2019
Time: 6:00pm EDT
Priority: 5-Medium
Access: Public
Created by: Ted Wilcox
Updated: Sunday, March 31, 2019 6:25pm GMT