Check out this article about our Town Hall on Gun Violence.

Jeanette Singletary sat quietly in the pew, holding a white, beaded bracelet, running her fingernail through each shiny sphere as if she were chanting the Rosary.

But Singletary is not a churchgoer.

It has been barely three weeks since Fahness Lutalo, the 44-year-old MMA instructor Singletary had been dating on and off for two years, died – shot multiple times by an acquaintance in his Tustin gym. “I’m in shock,” said Singletary. “I can’t believe he’s gone. I still look at my phone to see if he’s texted me.”

But, on Tuesday night, when she walked into New Hope Presbyterian Church in Orange for a town hall forum on gun violence organized by the church’s pastor, the Rev. Chineta Goodjoin, Singletary was hoping to learn something and get some answers.

The issue is close to Goodjoin’s heart, too. She lost a friend, the Rev. Sharonda Coleman-Singleton, who was one of nine killed in the shootings in June at Emmanuel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Charleston, S.C.

Speakers at Tuesday’s forum included Goodjoin, retired LAPD Det. Greg Kading, retired Westminster police Capt. Bill Lewis, UCI experts Mark Petracca and Roxane Silver, and Ivan Pitts, senior pastor of the Second Baptist Church in Santa Ana, one of the largest African American churches in Southern California.

Throughout the forum, there was one oft-repeated word: Complicated.

Speakers talked about the different facets of the issue such as gun regulation and the connection between race and gun violence.

Petracca cited a recent study that showed while 19 percent of gun deaths involving white people are murders, that number is about 82 percent for black people.

“There is an enormous racial disparity when it comes to the use of guns and violence,” he said. “The reason we don’t have gun control is because a majority of victims are black.”

Kading described himself as a white kid from Orange County with a high school diploma who went on to work 25 years in South Central Los Angeles, which is predominantly African American. Kading said he carries a gun in case he needs it to help himself or others in distress.

Read The Rest Of the Article Here:OC Register Article – New Hope