Candlelight vigil today to remember Newtown families


The Berkeley vigil will be held to remember the victims and families of the Newtown, CT, massacre. Photo: Jeremy Pollack/Creative Commons

There will be a candlelight vigil in Cedar Rose Park in Berkeley this evening to remember the families of those murdered yesterday in Newtown, CT.

The vigil is being organized by Suzanne Teran and Sheela Jivan. “We were moved by a message from a MoveOn member to hold vigils around the country at 5:00 p.m. tonight,” said Teran.

Here are the details:

Candlelight Vigil Remembering Connecticut families

Cedar Rose Park: Saturday 15 Dec., 5:00-5:30pm, 1300 Rose Street, Berkeley.

Join us tonight at Cedar Rose Park — we are shaken by what happened yesterday and this is an opportunity to join together as a community, remember the families impacted in Connecticut and show our elected officials that we want meaningful change to prevent gun violence. Please bring candles and signs, if you’d like to make them.

You can sign up if you are going to attend the vigil at

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  • uiuijkjkj

    Oakland police say 4 wounded in morning shooting

    Updated 3:48 pm, Saturday, December 15, 2012

    OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — Four people are hospitalized and two people are being
    detained for questioning after a shooting Saturday morning in East
    Oakland, police said.

    The four — three males and one female — were being treated for what police Officer Kevin McDonald described as non-life threatening injuries.

    The first of the four victims was found when police received several phone
    calls about shots being fired near the 8400 block of International Blvd.
    around 7:30 a.m. Saturday, police said.

    As additional calls were coming in, officers found two more people suffering from gunshot wounds on nearby 85th Ave.

    All three victims were taken to local hospitals. As police investigated
    they were told there was a fourth shooting victim who was taken to a
    hospital before the first officers arrived.

    Investigators have not released the names or ages of the people shot, or of the two
    people they’re questioning. No motive has been established, and no
    additional details have been released.

    Read more:

  • EarlyMorningCoffee

    Let’s go beyond guns. They will never be banned and they will always be available. The real issue with these shootings is mental illness and our society’s lack of understanding, compassion, and communication about it. We ignore what we can’t see, and right now everyone can see that someone who was in ill mental health went on a shooting spree. It’s horrific. This country needs mental health reform.

  • potheeny

    “[Guns} will never be banned and they will always be available.”

    Even though this probably is true, let’s try for better gun control anyway. There must be an opportunity to bring about some change for the better. Just in the past couple of weeks we’ve had this shooting, one in Oregon, and one in Kansas City that was nationally reported because the shooter was an NFL player. That’s not even counting the ones in Oakland and the recent one in Berkeley.

    “The real issue with these shootings is mental illness…”

    This definitely is the case and goes beyond the issue of gun control. The February killing in Northeast Berkeley did not involve a gun but it was committed by a person who, according to his mother and father, suffers from mental illness and ‘decided’ to stop taking medication.

    We need to screw up our courage and get treatment for the untreated mentally ill among us. Not wanting to take treatment may be part of the illness as well as a reflection of the poor quality of the medications and modalities that are in use to treat mental illnesses. Some will claim that the patient must not be forced to accept treatment. That would be a fine argument if people weren’t being killed, injured and scared out of their wits as a result of the actions of untreated mental illness. (Yes, this assumes treatment can work at least well enough to prevent this kind of senseless violence.)

  • EarlyMorningCoffee

    I’m sorry, but the more I see and hear about gun control, the less I feel it’s an issue with these mass slayings. It’s a smoke screen. Banning guns in this country will never happen. It’s the right wing’s pet issue, just as reproductive rights is the left’s. Yes, law and statutes, and proposals will be made to modify gun laws and reproductive rights, but never will one not be allowed to get a gun or an abortion in this country. NEVER. So let’s leave it alone and deal with mental health.

  • potheeny

    The comment did not suggest banning guns.

  • Charles_Siegel

    I think it might be possible to ban assault weapons, reducing the damage that crazies can cause. We obviously will not ban all guns, but no one needs an assault weapon for self-defense or for hunting.

    Banning assault weapons is simple conceptually, despite the political opposition.

    Mental health reform is much more difficult conceptually. Despite all the good intentions in the world, I don’t think anyone can come up with policies that can be passed as laws and that would have reached this killer.

  • EBGuy

    July 10, 2012 Council Agenda:
    From: Councilmember Arreguin
    Recommendation: Send a letter to the California State Legislature expressing opposition to
    Assembly Bill 1569, which extends the sunset date for Laura’s Law (California Welfare and Institutions Code Section 5349.5) to January 1, 2017, to continue to provide counties with the option to implement involuntary outpatient commitment for mentally ill persons.

  • bgal4
  • The Sharkey

    How do you define an “assault” weapon? It’s a very vague term.

  • potheeny

    Did Arreguin oppose Laura’s Law because it compels treatment or because it lacks enforcement mechanisms for caregivers? And why have only a couple of counties (Alameda County is not one of them) actually opted in to Laura’s Law?

    How can opposition to mandatory treatment be squared with the facts in the unprovoked slaying of a Berkeley resident by an untreated mentally ill person with a history of violence and hospitalization?

    As of September 27, 2012

    “Last week several bills were signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown (D),
    including legislation affecting women’s health issues and mental health

    Assembly Bill 1569 extends Laura’s Law until 2017.
    The 2002 law allows courts to mandate treatment for residents with
    severe mental health conditions and a history of violence or

  • The Sharkey

    In what way would improved gun control have kept this specific tragedy from happening?

    The shooter was refused sale of a gun in a store, thanks to current gun control laws, and then murdered someone (his mother) and stole their guns in order to carry out his rampage. We already have laws against murder and theft.

    I’d definitely support renewing the main provision of the Federal Assault Rifle ban (high capacity magazines), but I don’t know that it would have helped in this case.

  • potheeny

    “In what way would improved gun control have kept this specific tragedy from happening?”

    We need to work both issues: people who kill because of untreated mental illness and the means they use to do so. Obviously gun control wouldn’t have stopped the Berkeley killing [either] since no gun was involved.

  • The Sharkey

    And, unfortunately, in countries where guns are harder to come by mentally ill individuals are able to go on killing rampages armed just with knives.

  • potheeny

    Which is why we need to treat or confine mentally ill people who kill because of untreated mental illness.

    PS Individual killings need to be stopped as well.

  • tor_berg

    If the Federal Assault Weapons Ban had been renewed when it expired in 2004, then Nancy Lanza would not have owned the Bushmaster rifle that her son stole. Without a semiautomatic rifle, it would not have been possible for Adam Lanza to put many hundreds of bullets into 26 human beings in the span of approximately seven minutes. That’s how.

    I categorically reject the proposition that it is impossible to prevent 20 six-year-olds from being shot to death in their elementary school classrooms.

  • Charles_Siegel

    Let me change the recommendation. I just read an article saying that 59% of Americans back a ban on high-capacity ammunition clips.

    I would support that as the simplest way to implement what I actually meant by “a ban on assault weapons.” Presumably, there would be some exceptions, eg for police SWAT teams.

  • Charles_Siegel

    Come on, Sharkey. If this guy had been armed with a knife, would he have been able to kill 26 people?

  • The Sharkey

    The Virginia Tech killer was able to kill over 30 people in the span of about 10 minutes using two handguns, at least one of which was still 100% legal under the Federal Assault Weapons Ban (the other would have had to have a slightly smaller magazine in order to be legal under that ban).

    I don’t think civilians have any reason to own a gun like an AR-15 either, but I don’t think expanding gun bans would have stopped this.

  • The Sharkey

    Definitely not. This particular guy probably wouldn’t have killed anyone other than himself if he hadn’t had any guns.
    Just pointing out that getting rid of all the guns won’t necessarily stop spree killing.

  • Mbfarrel

    Little Round Top

  • EBGuy

    The semi-automatic Colt Match Target Rifle, which is similar to the banned AR-15, was designed to skirt the Federal Assault Weapons ban. From what I can tell, the 1994 model had 8 round magazines. Also, the 10 round limit in the Federal Assault Weapons Ban applied only to the the manufacture of NEW high capacity magazines. Existing high capacity magazines could continue to circulate.

  • EarlyMorningCoffee

    It was in response to a comment that has been edited or deleted.