PARKLAND, Fla (AP) — High school senior Chris Grady was hiding at Stoneman Douglas during the shooting days go. He says he’s angry and will be pressing with other students for gun control measures.
He and some fellow students organized a rally Sunday near the Parkland, Florida, high school, set to press for greater gun control measures from lawmakers. The students plan to visit the state capital, Tallahassee, and visit the nation’s capital in March.
Grady says pupils targeted by a gunman at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newton, Connecticut, in 2012 were “too young to understand.” But he adds: “We want to be the voice for those kids and thousands of others who have been affected by tragedies like this.”
Students are urging President Donald Trump and other leaders to do something to address gun violence.
Speaking on one of the Sunday talk shows,” Emma Gonzalez, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, says now is the time to get on the right side of the issue. Gonzalez also said politicians who are funded by the National Rifle Association won’t be allowed to stay in office when midterms elections come later this year.
David Hogg, a senior at the school, lashed out Trump for a tweet that blamed Democrats for not passing gun control legislation when they controlled both houses of Congress during the Obama administration. Hogg said Trump is now the president and he should do something because children are dying “and their blood is on your hands.”
Speaking Sunday on CNN, a group of students said they are determined to make a difference on the issue.
Cameron Kasky, a junior at the school, said a March 24 march on Washington will provide a time to talk about gun control, saying “we are losing our lives while the adults are playing around.”
Earlier, the principal of the high school addressed the community in an emotional video message.
The video, which was posted Sunday, showed an emotional Ty Thompson, offering to hug any student who needed it.
He thanked the thousands of people around the world that have reached out to the school in emails and on social media. He said he promises to love the staff, students and their families over the difficult weeks to come.
The school records of the suspect of a mass shooting in Florida killed 17 people reveal a child that had problems since middle school.
According to records obtained Sunday from the state Department of Children and Families, when Nikolas Cruz was a student at Westglades Middle School, he was constantly in trouble for insulting teachers and staff, using profanity, disruptive behavior, unexcused absences and at least one fight.
His mother was called in more than a dozen times for conferences and Cruz was frequently sent to counseling.
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School is closed Monday for the Presidents Day holiday. It will also be closed Tuesday and Wednesday. The Broward County School District said Sunday that the aim is for staff to return to campus by the end of the week.
School officials say there will be no classes Thursday and Friday while teachers and possibly students have time to come together and meet with counselors if they wish.
The family that took Nikolas Cruz in after his mother’s death told the Sun Sentinel he didn’t know how to use a microwave, didn’t pick up after himself and didn’t know how to do his own laundry.
Meanwhile, there is a movement for a nationwide rally on March 14. Organizers are calling for a 17-minute walkout by teachers and students. The Network for Public Education also announced a day of walkouts, sit-ins and other events on school campuses on April 20. The date is the anniversary of the 1999 shooting at Columbine High School in Colorado that left 12 students and one teacher dead.
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