Flint, MI—All summer long, Flint residents have suffered through a particularly ruthless wave of gun violence. Though city officials have taken steps to address these issues, some residents feel more needs to be done.
Tyonna McIntyre is the latest Flintstone to bring the fight to gun violence. Operating under the mantra of “be the change you want to see,” McIntyre decided to organize what she is calling a Stop the Violence rally after witnessing the uptick in crime.
“I feel that something has to be done. It has to be known that there is someone that’s willing to do that one thing to take back Flint and to try and change the way we look at gun violence here,” McIntyre said.
The rally will take place on Friday, September 3 at the peace garden on the corner of Martin Luther King Avenue and McClellan Street. The rally will go from 6-8 p.m. followed by a candlelight vigil from 8-9 p.m. It is free and open to the public
As someone with grandchildren and great-grandchildren growing up in Flint, McIntyre has seen firsthand how easy it can be for a child to fall into the wrong crowd. Being able to educate children on how to avoid compromising situations, she says, is the solution to mitigating gun violence.
“I just want to help create a world where my grandsons or great-grandsons will have a chance at life and won’t become a victim or a statistic,” McIntyre said.
A fan of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr, who once said “If I cannot do great things, I can do small things in a great way,” McIntyre decided this rally would be her “small thing.”
The event will include music, vendors, and access to mental health resources.
McIntyre has also invited Michigan State Police, members of Crime Stoppers and Mayor Sheldon Neely to be a part of the conversation. On top of this, featured speakers including Queen B Rejoice, a Flint mother whose daughter was killed in a shooting at Club What’s Next will be present to share their experiences with gun violence.