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Southwest Florida religious leaders honor Pittsburgh shooting victims

Posted at 10:34 PM, Oct 29, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-30 06:53:21-04

People of all religious backgrounds came to Temple Beth El in Fort Myers to remember victims of the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting. 

Rabbi Nicole Luna lead a vigil inspiring hope.

"We're here to show support and stand against the hate.

Joel Bloom grew up in Pittsburgh not too far away from the Tree of Life. He says he’s walking away from tonight’s ceremony with at least one thing in mind.

"More people have to show love and less hate," he said.

The tragedy that left 11 people dead has Bloom concerned.

"I love Fort Myers, but what happened in Pittsburgh could’ve happened anywhere including here," he said.

He said he’s tired of these shootings happening in common places and wants laws to change…but wants to be realistic.

"What are you going to do? Have an armed guard at every super market, at every show store, at ever news stand every drug store?" He asked.

"We’re all trying to figure that out right? But we have to start somewhere with some laws that make sense! So that someone with a history of mental illness and hatred and antisemitism can’t get a hold of an automatic rifle," said Ellie Rubenstein said laws are a start…but it’s deeper than that.

"I don’t know how you change people’s hearts. I don’t know how you make people more accepting," she said.

Bloom encourages people not to live in fear.

"So we have to live our free lives and enjoy it," he said.

Religious leaders added they hope this is a step in the right direction when it comes to welcoming people of all different backgrounds.