Aurora theater shooting survivor and SU grad speaks out on gun violence

Stephen Barton's photo of his movie ticket

Syracuse University graduate Stephen Barton survived the tragic shooting at a movie theater in Colorado, and now he is speaking out about gun violence.

Stephen Barton, 22, appears in an ad that calls on viewers to consider which presidential candidate has "a plan to stop gun violence" while watching the presidential debates. The ad opens with him sitting alone in an empty movie theater where he introduces himself by showing viewers his wounds.

"This past summer in a movie theater in Colorado, I was shot in the face and neck. But I was lucky," Barton says in the ad. "In the next four years, 48,000 Americans won't be so lucky, because they'll be murdered with guns in the next president's term, enough to fill over 200 theaters. So when you watch the presidential debates, ask yourself, â??who has a plan to stop gun violence?â??"

The ad is sponsored by Mayors Against Illegal Guns as part of a campaign called Demand a Plan. The campaignâ??s website encourages visitors to sign a petition demanding that President Obama and Mitt Romney create a plan to end gun violence.

According to, Mayors Against Illegal Guns is partnering with survivors from recent mass shootings, including Aurora, Virginia Tech, and Tucson, to demand change. The ad featuring Barton is scheduled to air in Washington, D.C., and Colorado through Wednesday, according to the Huffington Post.

Barton appeared on CNNâ??s "Starting Point" with Soledad Oâ??Brien on Monday morning to discuss his new campaign.

Barton spoke Wednesday on the steps of New York City Hall after meeting with Mayor Michael Bloomberg. Barton now works in policy research and victims outreach for Bloomberg's organization, Mayors Against Illegal Guns.