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'March For Our Lives' in Parkland draws thousands

Students, teachers impacted by 2018 Parkland shooting come together in hopes of tougher gun laws
Posted at 6:29 PM, Jun 11, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-11 20:44:13-04

PARKLAND, Fla. — More than 400 communities across the U.S. held "March for Our Lives" rallies on Saturday, but few received more attention than the one in Parkland.  

More than four years after a teen gunman walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and murdered 17 teachers and students, the sorrow and fear remains.  

"People are scared to go to school. People are scared to go outside," Sari Kaufman, a Yale University student who was a sophomore during the 2018 mass shooting, said.  

"Who here is angry that our representatives do nothing, while children die in the streets and in our schools?" Kaufman asked the crowd, while thousands of hands were raised to approving cheers.  

Stoneman Douglas teacher Sara Lerner told the crowd they don't need the thoughts and prayers of their elected officials.  

"We need policy," she said. "We need change. And we need action." 

Action to Bailey Srbrenik, who attended the rally, means who the 18-year-old first-time voter will support in the upcoming elections.  

"I would not vote for a candidate who takes money from the NRA," Srbrenik said.

He was a student at the middle school next to Stoneman Douglas during that tragic day in 2018.

"I had to hide in my classroom for three hours," Sbrenik said. "And it definitely affected me."

After a series of fiery speeches, the actual march began and, at one point, it passed by the shadow of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.  

Kaufman led the march of young activists.  

Older ones registered new voters at a tent staffed by the Broward County League of Women Voters.  

The line of marchers numbered in the thousands. Kaufman hopes the momentum of activism carries into the November elections, but she warned her peers not to be distracted by elected officials who change the subject, when proposals for new gun restrictions are on the table.  

"There's a lot of other issues," she said. "But gun violence is an important issue, and people will be scared if we don't solve it."