Rallies at State House bring people, religions together to honor New Zealand victims


Underneath the capitol of Ohio, Sunday, a statement was being made with a capital "S."

In fact, there were two.

One was a rally for political freedom in Algeria in North Africa. The other was remembering the 50 people who died at shootings at mosques in Christchurch, New Zealand, last week.

Advertisement - Story continues below

"What happened on Friday in New Zealand has shaken my entire community," said Zerqa Abid.

Abid is a co-organizer of the event. She's with My Project USA. She helped to bring together people from all walks of life to show support.

"I want to say that I'm getting tired," one man said as he addressed the crowd. "But, you know what? We cannot give up."

They say they're tired of the heartbreak and wiping away the tears. They're tired of waiting for the next time to be the "this time" that something will change when it comes to mass shootings.

"We continue to have to come out here, unfortunately," said Rabbi Jessica Shimberg.

Shimberg finds comfort in Sunday's show of unity.

"To me, that is the sign of our humanity," she said. "We are all from the same human root. We are all part of the same family."

The other rally taking place at the State House, for political freedom in Algeria, eventually joined with the larger rally. They brought their louder sound system and hooked it up for the people to, literally, lift each others' voices.

If you ask anyone in the crowd how to stop mass shootings, you'll get a mixed bag of responses. Some will say stricter gun laws. Others will say it's about ending hateful rhetoric and bigotry. Some will say the need to elect different officials in 2020.

But, Sunday's statement at the State House, they say, is all that needs to be said for now:

"We are all together and that's a very powerful feeling," said Rick Neal.