March With Us Against Weapons of Mass Murder
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On February 14, 2018, yet another terrible mass shooting involving a semi-automatic weapon occurred in America. At Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, 17 people, including students and teachers were murdered in their own school. School is a place where students are meant to feel safe. It is unimaginable to think that any American student could have been one of the victims of a mass shooting in their own school that was thought to be a place of safe learning. No teacher, child, or individual should ever be put in a situation like this horrid shooting.
As long as people in America are allowed to have semi-automatic weapons, these deadly mass shootings will continue. We can no longer sit around and watch innocent people lose their lives to gun violence. If one child is shot in a classroom, we all feel it. We all carry the burden. We are all vulnerable. How many lives must we see go in order to make change in the world? Parents send their kids to school daily expecting they will come home alive. It is beyond comprehension that some parents at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High will never see their children again after sending them to school in the morning.
During President Donald J. Trump’s speech on February 14th, he expressed his condolences to everyone who was affected by the shooting. He discussed his “[commitment] to working with state and local leaders to help secure [American] schools and tackle the difficult issue of mental health” (CNN). President Trump did however fail to mention the most pressing issue right now: common-sense gun control. There are too many military-style weapons that are currently in the hands of unfit individuals. There is no reason that these weapons are in the hands of anyone other than our military and police. Our Congress and President need to act to outlaw these guns for civilian use. It is our government’s responsibility to protect us, and they have chosen to take money from the Gun Lobby over doing what is right for this country. This is not a political issue. It is a matter of safety. A matter of life and death. And we cannot stand for it any more.
We are three freshmen high school students who refuse to accept the epidemic of gun violence in this country. We plan to mobilize with others and make a difference, so that guns no longer make their way into our communities and schools and so that no student, educator or parent ever must experience the inhumanity that has become a tragic regular occurrence. We believe that with your help, we can write the next page in the history textbook that you had homework in last night. No matter your political point of view, your age, or ethnic background, it is important that we have your support in putting an end to the gun violence that has killed too many.
On March 24th, we plan to join students from all over the country, including some from Marjory Stoneman Douglas Highschol and unite students from New York City high schools, and beyond, to march in Washington, DC. We will protest the lack of action by our government. We will demand common-sense gun legislation… Legislation that will outlaw military-style weapons designed for mass killing. The Second Amendment gives the right to the people of the United States to “keep and bear arms, ” but it also mentions “well-regulated.” We have failed in the “well-regulated” category.
We are in high school. We are too young to vote for politicians who can help with better gun control laws. But what we can do is symbolically refuse to go to school, make noise and protest and march to Congress in Washington and let them know that the young people in this country will not tolerate this any longer! We want safe schools, safe malls, safe movie theaters, safe music concerts and a safe country with safe environments for teens. Join us and stand up against the NRA (National Rifle Association) and those in congress who continue to allow for the purchase of weapons of mass murder. We want our voices to be heard and we want our politicians to know that we will not stop until there is change, so spread this message to everyone you know so we can gain voices and make the loudest noise we possibly can.
If you are interested in participating in this fight for humanity and joining the march in Washington DC on March 24th, please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
-Amelie Boose, Annie Skier, and Meadow Wielander
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