SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - On Saturday, July 26, two mothers marched to demonstrate the action they are taking to stop the violence in the community.
The “Save our Sons, Drop the Guns” march was organized by Lawanda Finney. On Saturday morning, dozens marched peacefully from the Shreveport Police headquarters to the Caddo Parish Courthouse downtown.
One of those marchers was Stormy Gage-Watts, District 7 Caddo Commissioner, she says we are at a pivotal point in history. And one of the keys to putting a stop to gun violence is getting to the root of the problem.
Watts says it begins at home.
“We need to find out why our youth are so angry and we need to address that to begin with,” said Watts.
In 2017, Shreveport had more than 50 deadly shootings. One of those shootings was of Lawanda Finney’s son, Benjamin Finney Jr. He was shot and killed while sitting inside his car in 2017.
Finney says she organized the “Save our Sons, Drop the Guns” March in 2018, because she doesn’t want another family to experience what she went through in losing a son to senseless gun violence.
“I’m tired of our black men being killed by our young black men. It’s time to stop it,” said Finney.
Finney voiced her concerns for what she feels needs to be done.
“Something has to be done now,” said Finney, “I don’t feel like the detectives are doing their job as far as trying to solve some of these murders”.
Tina Lewis also knows the devastating feeling of losing a son to gun violence. Her son Markzalous Lewis was also killed in 2017.
Lewis echoes the same concerns as Finney. She says accountability starts within the community.
“First of all we need to stop killing each other because we can’t win if we are killing all of our own soldiers,” said Lewis.
Two mothers sharing the pain that will never go away. Finney says she will keep marching until justice is served.
“It’s devastating, but I keep going, because I know one day we will get justice, but until then we have to push for justice,” said Finney.