While Democrats staged a sit-in for gun control on the House floor on Wednesday, entertainers like Lady Gaga and Lin-Manuel Miranda joined forces with Billboard and Everytown for Gun Safety to craft an open letter to Congress, calling for a “safe and sane end to gun violence.”
The letter comes in the wake of the murder of singer Christina Grimmie and the mass shooting (the largest in U.S. history) at Pulse nightclub, both in Orlando, Fla. in early June.
The letter is a call to action for gun control and safety, asking Congress to require background checks for every gun sale and to block anyone on the terrorist watch list from buying guns.
“As leading artists and executives in the music industry, we are adding our voices to the chorus of Americans demanding change,” the letter reads. “Music always has been celebrated communally, on dancefloors and at concert halls. But this life-affirming ritual, like so many other daily experiences—going to school or church or work—now is threatened, because of gun violence in this country.The one thing that connects the recent tragedies in Orlando is that it is far too easy for dangerous people to get their hands on guns. We call on Congress to do more to prevent the gun violence that kills more than 90 Americans every day and injures hundreds more.”
Billboard reached out to more than 180 artists and executives in the music industry asking for their support in ending gun violence; singer Joan Jett was the first to offer her signature and support, while Lady Gaga (who read the names of every Orlando shooting victim at a vigil in Los Angeles after the tragedy) followed shortly thereafter.
Other industry signatories include Miranda, Jennifer Lopez, Cher, Kesha, Barbra Streisand, Common, Alicia Keys, DJ Khaled, Sia, Paul McCartney, Iggy Pop, Pearl Jam, Yoko Ono, Questlove, Joan Jett, Billy Joel, Britney Spears, Christina Aguilera and the Dixie Chicks.
Correction: The original version of this story misspelled Lin-Manuel Miranda’s first name.
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