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His remarks, in part:
“Gun violence is happening everywhere and it’s impacting everyone.
Seattle is not unique and Seattle is not immune.
Our nation is experiencing an epidemic of senseless gun violence. We have seen it in Seattle in the early hours of Sunday morning and we saw it yesterday at Seattle Pacific University.
I have, in the last week, spent time in the funeral home with the family of Ahmed Said. I spent time in the home of Dwone Anderson-Young. In both cases, I spent time talking to their mothers and it was a very, very difficult moment. But in both cases, I saw people who want to figure out how we move forward with compassion and how we move forward with justice.
Last night at a vigil, the two families of Ahmed and Dwone had not yet met. Dwone’s mother talked about how proud she was of her son who was a graduate of UW who was interested in everything computers. She also talked about how proud she was of him being gay.
Of Ahmed, we’ve heard the same thing. A young man who was working in the Somali community on HIV/AIDS issues and issues related to the LGBT community.
Those two mothers hugged themselves on that corner where their two sons died.
We have to find a way to move forward.
Another young man died yesterday at Seattle Pacific University. His name was Paul Lee, a Korean-American student with a bright future ahead of him.
So we stand here at the end of a week with three young men, good members of their community, excited about their futures.
We stand here. And they are dead.
There are stories about how things could have been worse if it hadn’t been for another young student — Jon Meis — who stood up, took charge, put his own life at risk and prevented a situation from being far more tragic.
We must acknowledge the perverse universality of violence where problems — be they on a school campus or in a home or on a nearby street corner — are too often solved with guns. And this city and this nation must address this senseless violence.
I’ve given a lot of thought about how we can move forward and I’m going to share some initial thoughts with you. I don’t have the solution today. The solution has evaded my predecessors as mayor, mayors around the country, governors and presidents.
I’m convinced the solution itself will not come from us alone. It will come with the community working with their elected leaders.
I will be calling a special meeting of the Seattle City Council in the next few weeks to address in detail how we as a city can move forward on the issue of public safety and on the issue of gun violence.
Despite the tragedy that has hit this city — not just on Sunday and not just yesterday, but again and again, week after week, year after year — I’m convinced that Seattle will be defined in the end not by these tragedies. Instead, we will be defined by those who are going to step forward to rebuild this community, to rebuild lives.
We are going to step forward and we are going to have heroes, not just with Jon Meis at Seattle Pacific University, but heroes who are standing with me today who will step forward and, together, we will find a way to deal with the issue of senseless, random violence.
It’s been a difficult week for this city and I have been moved by the ability of this city to come together. I was moved by the students I prayed with today at Seattle Pacific University. I was moved by the young people I met last night at the memorial for Dwone and Ahmed. It’s those experiences that convince me that, despite the tragedies of this week, we can find a way to move forward.
It won’t be easy. Others have tried and others have failed. But I think we’re reaching a point in this nation where we must find a solution. We have no choice.”