Utahns participate in ‘Wear Orange’ campaign, call for action to address gun violence

SALT LAKE CITY – People across the country are wearing orange this weekend to bring awareness to the issue of gun violence.

The “Wear Orange” campaign was inspired by a woman who was shot and killed in Chicago in 2013.

The movement is spreading across the country.

In Salt Lake City, several groups including Moms Demand Action and March for our Lives organized a benefit concert in support of the Wear Orange movement.

Dozens of people gathered at Canyon Rim Park to listen to several bands and hear from shooting survivors.

Carolyn Tuft shared her story. In 2007, her daughter was killed in a shooting at Trolley Square.

“There is so much of my life that was taken away,” Tuft said.

The pain of that tragedy follows Tuft every day. She can’t help but get emotional every time she learns of another shooting.

“It angers me and it breaks my heart because I know what they are going to be going through,” Tuft said.

She is using her experience to help educate people about the toll this violence takes on its victims.

“It’s heartbreaking," Tuft said. "Nobody should have to visit their children in a cemetery like I do mine."

She and others wearing orange say their movement isn’t about taking away anyone’s Second Amendment rights.

“It’s a human issue and it’s a huge problem,” Tuft said. “It’s an epidemic right now and we got to figure out a way to solve the problem.”

The Utah Shooting Sports Council doesn’t support any level of gun control.

“Generally, we are not very supportive of the idea of banning guns,” said Brent Tenney, a member of the board of directors of the organization. “We definitely sympathize with the victims of gun violence.”

The two sides of this debate seem to be worlds apart.

“We don’t think they do much to solve the problem of gun violence,” Tenney said when asked about gun control laws.

As the divide between the two sides isn’t looking like it’s getting any smaller, Tuft isn’t giving up hope her voice can make a difference and prevent others from experiencing her pain.

“That’s why I am trying to do this: to wake people up,” Tuft said.