Fall Out Boy have made a $100,000 (£83,000) donation to Everytown – a non-profit organisation that advocates for gun control and protests against gun violence – in the wake of the mass shooting that occurred in Highland Park, Illinois this week.
The tragedy happened on Monday (July 4), when, during an Independence Day parade in the city – which is located approximately 25 miles north of downtown Chicago – six people were shot dead by a rooftop gunman. According to officials, the attacker targeted attendees of the parade at random, and was armed with a high-powered rifle. In addition to the six fatalities, it’s said that 24 people were taken to hospital.
Police later identified a 22-year-old man named Robert “Bobby” E Crimo III – who has a small cult following as a musician under the alias Awake The Rapper – as a “person of interest”. In one song that he released last year, Crimo fantasises about engaging in a mass shooting and being killed by police.
In a statement shared to social media, Fall Out Boy wrote: “Chicago is where we grew up, and we are heartbroken for the families and entire community of Highland Park, as well as every single victim of wanton gun violence in America.”
Chicago is where we grew up, and we are heartbroken for the families and entire community of Highland Park, as well as every single victim of wanton gun violence in America.
— Fall Out Boy (@falloutboy) July 8, 2022
The band’s $100,000 donation to Everytown comes via their own non-profit initiative, The Fall Out Boy Fund, which they launched in 2017 “as a way for us to give back to Chicago”. Among the other philanthropic efforts they’ve made through the initiative are similar donations to the Black Lives Matter movement and Chicago’s COVID-19 response fund.
To that end, the band have long been vocal about their stance on America’s gun violence epidemic. In 2018, for example, they curated (and headlined) a benefit concert that raised funds for gun reform charities. It came in response to the Parkland school shooting that occurred in February 2018, wherein 17 were killed and another 17 were injured.
“We must demand our lawmakers do more to end this gun violence crisis,” bassist Pete Wentz said at the time.