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Gun violence has never felt distant.

This weekend we wear orange.

On January 21, 2013, Hadiya Pendleton, a high school student from Chicago, marched in President Barack Obama’s second inaugural parade. A week later she was shot and killed on a playground in Chicago.

After Hadiya’s death, her friends commemorated her life by wearing orange. They chose orange because it is the color hunters wear in the woods to protect themselves and others.

Wear Orange began on June 2, 2015, Hadiya’s 18th birthday, and is now observed nationally on the first Friday, Saturday, and Sunday of every June.

This weekend is about solidarity, remembrance, and most importantly, action.

Hadiya was killed more than a decade ago and 2,000 miles from my home in Oregon, but her story feels as close as ever.

Our communities live with the perpetual sorrow of gun violence. Its shadow falls on our schools, our grocery stores, and our streets. Every single day, new families receive the devastating news that a loved one has been shot and killed.

We can do more to prevent gun violence.

We can ban assault weapons and bump stocks.

We can ban the production of high capacity magazines.

We can close background check loopholes.

And we can stand up to those who profit by encouraging bloodshed.

I am committed to taking on gun violence in our country. I am committed to protecting our communities. And I am committed to working for you.

This weekend we wear orange to raise awareness of gun violence. But every day we act to try and end gun violence.



Posted on June 3, 2023.

Born in the small town of Myrtle Creek, Oregon, Jeff Merkley has never lost touch with his working class roots.

As a U.S. Senator, he works every day to create opportunity for working families, stop the corruption of our democracy, and tackle the climate crisis.

A workhorse and a progressive champion, Jeff Merkley is leading a movement to get our country back on track.

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