WHEN: Feb. 11, 6 p.m.; Feb. 12, 6 p.m.; Feb. 13, 7:30 p.m. WHERE: The Arch, Washington Square Park, NYC WHAT: Very flamboyant visuals
NEW YORK, NY (Feb. 10, 2017)— The weekend before Valentine’s Day, gun violence prevention advocates Gays Against Guns (GAG) are presenting three free performances of “My Bloody Valentine,” a tableau vivant depicting the “bad romance between Donald Trump and the NRA” under the Arch in Washington Square Park.
GAG’s drag-heavy presentation involves colorful depictions of Donald Trump and the National Rifle Association involved in a bloody, if elegant, courtship that adds up to bad gun legislation and many lives needlessly lost. The group also sings a creatively embellished version of the classic Rodgers and Hart show tune, “My Funny Valentine.” Performances are Saturday, Feb. 11, 6 p.m.; Sunday, Feb. 12, 6 p.m.; and Monday, Feb. 13, 7:30 p.m.
GAG is performing in an effort to implore members of the public to contact their representatives and demand they block H.R. 38, the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act of 2017, and stop Trump’s pro-NRA cabinet appointees.
“The National Rifle Association loves Donald Trump, contributing over $30 million in blood money to his presidential campaign,” says GAG member Mari Gustafson. The NRA also gave $20 million in campaign contributions to members of Congress, in an attempt to promote a “Guns everywhere” scenario, said Gustafson. “In return, Congress and Trump want to give the NRA the gift of a federal concealed carry reciprocity law that overrides all state restrictions,” she says.
The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act, which was introduced in the House of Representatives on January 3 and is supported by Trump, would require any state that issues permits for concealed weapons to recognize such permits issued by other states, even if they have different eligibility and training requirements or less stringent restrictions on gun ownership.
GAG is speaking out against reciprocity because “The NRA’s Guns Everywhere bill will mean more gun violence and more gun deaths,” says Gustafson. “We need to strengthen our already weak federal gun control laws, not pass a law that will bar states from enforcing their own gun control laws.”
Founded in June 2016 after a mass shooting in an LGBTQ nightclub in Orlando that left 49 people dead, GAG believes that gun violence is a public health issue that disproportionately affects people of color, religious minorities, and LGBTQ Americans. It has chapters in New York, Los Angeles, New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Washington, DC. Each year, 33,000 people die in the United States from gun violence, with one-third due to homicide and two-thirds due to suicide.