Posted at: 01/26/2013 11:38 AM
Updated at: 01/26/2013 9:56 PM
By: Associated Press
Ever since the tragic shootings at an elementary school in Connecticut last month, the issue of gun violence in America has taken center stage in the nation's capital.
Thousands of people marched on Washington today in support of stricter gun control laws.
Speakers called on Congress to pass a ban on military-style assault weapons and high-capacity ammunition clips.
Education Secretary Arne Duncan told the crowd gathered at the Washington Monument that it's not about taking away Second Amendment rights, but about gun safety and saving lives.
Participants held signs reading "Ban Assault Weapons Now" and "Gun Control Now." Other signs carried names of victims of gun violence.
The rally was organized in response to the massacre of 20 first-graders and six teachers in Newtown, Conn., in December
About 100 residents of Newtown came to the march.
Kara Baekey of Norwalk, Conn., says she immediately thought of her two young children when she heard about the shooting. She said she decided she must take action, and that's why she joined the march.