The March for Our Lives Kids Now
PARKLAND, FLORIDA—On February 14, 2018 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School (MSDHS), Nikolas Cruz murdered 17 students. This led to nation-wide protests against gun violence. A group of students who went to MSDHS created March for Our Lives to prevent more school shootings from happening. Those students are Alfonso Calderon, Sarah Chadwick, Jaclyn Corin, Emma Gonzalez, David Hogg, Cameron Kasky and Alex Wind.
Since that day, they have accomplished a lot. On March 24, 2018, they organized the “largest single day of protest against gun violence in history.” Millions of people came together nationwide to protest the inaction of political leaders. They toured the country on the “Road to Change.” They met with survivors of gun violence and their families and communities. On the tour, they registered 50,000 brand-new voters. On National Voter Registration Day, they went out and registered another 800,000 voters.
They are continuing their fight against gun violence. On their website, they have ways to take action. There are directions to join and start chapters under March for Our Lives, registering to vote and more. There is a petition to sign for Universal Background Checks for guns. There is a place for people to share their own stories of gun violence.
Their website also has lots of information and statistics. Among them are price tags. The National Rifle Association (NRA) has paid the politicians of most states certain sums of money. The price tag is that amount divided by the amount of students in that state. Essentially, it is the price tag of each student. It shows how little the NRA cares about the students themselves. The most per student was in Arizona where students are worth $6.70 to the NRA. The least per student was in California where students are worth one cent to the NRA.
They also have a tab dedicated to their policies, of which there are ten.
Their first policy is to fund the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for research on gun violence as a public health issue. 100 medical organizations have called on Congress to restore funding for this research.
They also want to get rid of restrictions of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The ATF is currently unable to digitize gun sales records and cannot require gun dealers to conduct annual inventory checks to make sure none of their guns are missing.
Currently, people are only required to go through federal background checks if they purchase guns from licensed dealers. March for Our Lives wants to ensure that everyone, no matter how they obtain their guns, goes through a background check.
Since high-capacity magazines’ sole purposes are to fire as many bullets in the shortest amount of time, they want a ban on them to prevent more deaths.
Another ban proposed is the future sale and distribution of semi-automatic assault rifles to keep them off America’s streets. Their solution for those who already own semi-automatic assault rifles are either a buy-back program and/or registration. Civilians have no use for weapons of war.
They want to fund intervention programs that address the root of the violence. They want federal, state and local leaders to invest more in evidence-based strategies for violence reduction.
In the case of individuals who risk harming themselves or others, there are the extreme risk protection orders. These orders temporarily remove a gun from a person that is in crisis.
Another issue is that many domestic abusers are free to possess and buy guns. They want Congress to close loopholes allowing convicted stalkers, partner abusers and people temporarily charged with restraining orders to possess guns. They also want to make the surrender of guns from abusers mandatory.
Gun trafficking is a huge problem in America and part of the reason for that is that there are no laws targeting it. This makes it hard to investigate and prosecute gun traffickers as it is not technically illegal.
Roughly 4.6 million children live in homes with unsecure guns which leads to accidental deaths. They believe laws should be put in place to ensure that gun owners practice safe storage of guns.
While the hype surrounding March for Our Lives has died down, there are still many people willing to fight against gun violence. There are chapters nationwide dedicated to fighting school shootings regardless of whether or not they have garnered the amount of attention they did in February and March of 2018. Their fight is not over and they will keep fighting until America has no more school shootings.