In an announcement this week Sravasti Abbey, the Tibetan Buddhist monastery in Newport, condemned the Orlando mass shooting and said responding with “Bigotry, discrimination, and angry retaliation” isn’t an effective response.
“As Buddhists, who cherish life and the intrinsic worth of every living being, we believe it is vital to preserve a heart of compassion for victims and perpetrators, even amidst challenging public discourse,” the statement read.
They urged people to wish for true happiness for one another before calling on lawmakers to enact “common sense gun laws.”
“The inaction and failure of our Senate and House over many years to enact common sense gun laws is a disgrace. We call on them to act for the welfare of all common citizens. We have the right to live in safe communities, and gun ownership does not foster safety,” the abbey stated in the announcement.
Tracy Simmons is an award winning journalist specializing in religion reporting, digital entrepreneurship and social journalism. In her 15 years on the religion beat, Simmons has tucked a notepad in her pocket and found some of her favorite stories aboard cargo ships in New Jersey, on a police chase in Albuquerque, in dusty Texas church bell towers, on the streets of New York and in tent cities in Haiti.
Simmons has worked as a multimedia journalist for newspapers across New Mexico, Texas and Connecticut. Currently she serves as the executive director of SpokaneFAVS.com, a digital journalism start-up covering religion news and commentary in Spokane, Wash. She is also a Scholarly Assistant Professor at Washington State University.