On Valentine’s Day, the unthinkable happened in Parkland, Florida. A gunman, armed with an AR-15 rifle, entered the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and killed 17 people: students, coaches, and a teacher.
Unthinkable, but the Parkland shooting marked the 18th school shooting of 2018, the 8th where someone other than the gunman was injured. Since Stoneman Douglas, 9 more school shootings occurred.
Thoughts and prayers came from around the globe, including from the White House and members of congress. Sympathy and sentiment after mass shootings, like the one at Pulse Night Club in Orlando where a gunman murdered 49 people or in Las Vegas where a gunman killed 58 people, have become our reflex reaction.
There was also this misstep from the White House, included in a Twitter thread about DACA, that drew public ire.
So many signs that the Florida shooter was mentally disturbed, even expelled from school for bad and erratic behavior. Neighbors and classmates knew he was a big problem. Must always report such instances to authorities, again and again!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 15, 2018
But the students of Stoneman Douglas decided thoughts and prayers from Washington were not enough. And a movement was born.
Largely through social media, the students organized a school walkout that took place on March 14, marking the one month anniversary of the tragedy at Stoneman Douglas. They also organized a global march: the March for Our Lives.
844 events worldwide have registered on the March for Our Lives website. Most events are scheduled in North America and Europe, but there is an event on every continent except Antarctica.
The students of Stoneman Douglas and their allies around the globe created history and documented it on social media.
Former President Barack Obama and former First Lady Michele Obama wished them well on Twitter.
Michelle and I are so inspired by all the young people who made today’s marches happen. Keep at it. You’re leading us forward. Nothing can stand in the way of millions of voices calling for change.
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) March 24, 2018
Here follows a look at the March for Our Lives from the viewpoint of those who were there.