The Pepper Bough

High school students around the nation are pleading for change when it comes to gun control

Aneesa Arana, Sports Editor

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Just recently, another incident marked one of the biggest school shootings in America since the Columbine High massacre.

On Wednesday, February 14th a former student, age 19, Nikolas Cruz took the lives of 17 students and staff members at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida.

It is now confirmed by authorities that the officer assigned to the school, never entered the building in which the students were killed. Deputy Scot Peterson waited four minutes to actually enter, knowing that shots were being fired. It is known that he immediately resigned on Thursday. The shooter, Nikolas Cruz, is being held without bail and it is expected for him to be in a center away from the public for life.

Nikolas Cruz and his brother were causing trouble before the shooting occurred. His past actions were informed by the police yet nothing was done about it. The FBI has recently stated that it was a mistake on the law enforcement’s part because of their inability to take these reports seriously.

On Cruz’s social media applications, there was photographic evidence of him obtaining weapons. Investigators are now attempting to find the purchases made of the guns, Cruz was able to legally purchase an AR-15 rifle and use it in the shooting. Controversy is stirring up as America speaks upon the purchases of assault weapons at such a young age.

Students and faculty are creating the conversation about the unnecessary weapons for a 19-year-old. Senior, Emma Gonzalez, delivered a well-spoken speech at the gun control rally in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Emma Gonzalez mentioned President Donald Trump and the NRA as she gave her reasons as to why it is a necessity for gun control and the purchase of semiautomatic and fully automatic accessories to a weapon to have stricter laws. Marches and protests are taking place all across America. On Twitter, the official Women’s March account tweeted about a National March to fight back against legislators. This National March will take place around high schools all over America, inviting faculty members and students to protest for 17 minutes at 10 am to have their voice be heard.

Last Wednesday, we had a PBIS day which included a lockdown drill video made about 2 years ago. Many students in my second-period class, the period that the school viewed it in, believed that the video wasn’t helpful at all. I personally believed that our school district did a poor job of showing the importance of educating yourself upon the drills we have. They failed to mention what happened in Florida and other instances similar to that. The brutal truth of this all is that if things like the shooting in Florida didn’t happen, we wouldn’t be having conversations and a full day dedicated to learning about the lockdown drills.
Our school district failed to show the importance of conversation and education. I’m deeply disappointed in our district and the job that they’ve done. I am extremely proud of my class and the other classes as well who are putting themselves into the protest, the youth is finally stepping up and stopping the silence that is forced upon them.

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High students and faculty are extremely brave for forcing the public to hear their opinions and demands, I hope that other civilians will step up to help. Tragic moments like these shootings should never be forgotten, we need to learn from these events. We need to trust the youth and hear what they have to say. Many students like myself encourage everyone to fight for what you believe in, especially when you’ve been affected by the issue.

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High school students around the nation are pleading for change when it comes to gun control