Join Action Committee for Political Affairs (JACPAC) applauds Target’s decision on Wednesday to “request that guests not bring firearms to Target – even in communities where it is permitted by law.” After a local and national boycott of the store for the past month, JAC members shopped today at Highland Park’s Target store at 2099 Skokie Valley Rd.
“Gun violence is becoming too common across our country,” said Highland Park resident and JACPAC executive director Marcia Balonick. “Even though Illinois does not permit people to openly carry guns, we felt it was important to pressure the company to ban this practice in its other stores.”
According to the Center for American Progress, 33,000 Americans are killed with guns each year and by next year gun deaths among young people will outnumber fatalities from card accidents. There have already been 74 school shootings since the Sandy Hook tragedy.
“Openly visible guns have no place in stores that attract families with kids,” said Balonick. “There is no reason to bring a gun into a store while you are shopping for toilet paper, cleaning supplies and children’s clothes. Our country is quickly turning into the Wild West.”
JACPAC is a bipartisan national group based in Highland Park that promotes the United States-Israel relationship, reproductive freedom, separation of religion and state, and social policies in keeping with the core values of the American Jewish community. JACPAC has also joined forces with gun groups across the country in a national campaign to end gun violence.
“Target’s decision shows the power of action and the strength of our voices,” Balonick said. “They read our member’s emails and petitions and they listened to our phone-calls. Our message was simple: we will shop in your store when you change your policy.”
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While this is a victory, she said, our fight continues. More lenient gun laws are being passed at an alarming rate in state legislatures across the country and Congress continues to struggle to pass an universal background check on potential gun owners.