In the wake of the recent mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, students are demanding change.
School administrators have encouraged their students to vent their feelings and to demonstrate against gun violence and some students have held demonstrations of their own outside of schools.
Rachel Donly, a student at South Broward High School was demonstrating outside the school along Federal Highway. She was angry about the unwillingness of Florida legislators to do something about gun violence. “We are here to protest. The Florida House refused to hear a bill banning automatic weapons.”
L’ Tavia Holmes, a student at Sheridan Technical College said, “We are students and we should be focusing on school work and proms. We need gun control now.”
Mikaela Mackenzie, also a student at Sheridan Technical College said the gun violence needs to stop and legislators need to make changes in gun laws.
Veronika Liskova, a student at South Broward High School said, “These gun attacks have happened too many times. This will happen again unless something is done,” she said.
Lourdes Gonzalez, the principal at Hollywood Hills High School encouraged students to express their feelings about the shooting. Students who wanted to demonstrate were permitted to march around the football field and walk to the front of the school. They held signs and banners while chanting and spoke about their feelings about the situation. They were also encouraged to share their feelings during study hall periods.
“This is really tragic. I wanted the students to be able to have an orderly demonstration. The students are full of ideas and they say the time for change is now,” she said.
Some of the students signed a banner showing their support for the students at Stoneman Douglas showing their support and concern. Aliyah Jackson, a leader at Hollywood Hills said, “We want to provide support to the students at Stoneman Douglas.”
Dametre Williams, also a student leader said, “This hits my heart. We want to see meaningful change to prevent this from happening again.”
Many of the young people in the schools believe it is time for changes in gun laws and stronger background checks so that people with mental illness can’t gain access to guns.