"Yinzers for gun control" march in Pittsburgh

In Pennsylvania, the March for our Lives had a steeltown flair

Published March 26, 2018 6:59PM (EDT)

Signs at the Pittsburgh March for our Lives, March 24 (Ashley Murray)
Signs at the Pittsburgh March for our Lives, March 24 (Ashley Murray)

This feature is part of Salon's Young Americans initiative, showcasing emerging journalists reporting from America's red states. Read more Young Americans stories.

ya-embed-logoApproximately 3,000 marchers in Pittsburgh, Pa., joined the worldwide March For Our Lives demonstrations on Saturday, March 24, as a protest against gun violence in schools and beyond. Pittsburgh’s march began at its City-County Building on Grant Street and crossed downtown to Market Square, where a rally commenced with speakers from local high schools and nonprofits, including CeaseFirePA.

A current bill in the Pennsylvania legislature, Senate Bill 383, would allow school employees to carry firearms on school campuses. Sen. Donald White, who represents portions of Southwestern Pennsylvania, re-introduced the bill this year.



John Kostuch, 50, of North Huntingdon, Pa., holds a sign that reads, “Yinzers 4 better + more gun control,” a reference to the so-called “Pittsburghese” word “yinz.”


Erica Leonard, 38, of Jeannette, Pa., helps her son Lyle,4, choose a “no gun” button at the Pittsburgh “March For Our Lives” rally. Amanda Hargrave, 34, Youngstown, Ohio, employee of the novelty business CN Sales, sells the buttons as she holds her two-month-old baby.


Pat, 67, from Burgettstown, Pa., served with the 101st airborne division in the U.S. war in Vietnam from 1968 to 1970.  The veteran, who would not provide his last name, said he was at the rally to “support the kids.” He said that assault rifles are weapons of war and do not “belong with regular people.”


A crowd packs Market Square in downtown Pittsburgh, Pa., for one of the many “sibling” marches of the “March For Our Lives” in Washington, D.C., on March 24, 2018.


A sign at the “March For Our Lives” rally in Pittsburgh reads: “Is our blood not enough proof? #NeverAgain”

By Ashley Murray

Ashley Murray was born and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, where an "eds and meds" economy -- education and medicine -- has replaced the steel industry. There, she studies environmental journalism at the graduate level at Point Park University in the city's Golden Triangle, where the Monongahela and Allegheny rivers form the Ohio River. Through Salon's Young Americans reporting project, she hopes to communicate Pennsylvania's changing demographics and political climate -- blue cities surrounded by red rural counties. She also hopes to shed light on how the fossil fuel-focused state faces growing concern over climate change. Pennsylvania is the nation's second leading natural gas producer and third largest coal producer. You can find Ashley's work in The Allegheny Front, Pittsburgh City Paper and the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

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