Gun Control: How Many Lives Does It Take?

It has been a rollercoaster of emotions for the entire world watching the results of a tragic school shooting at Majory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkdale, Florida that took 17 lives on February 14th. The 18th school shooting in the U.S this year alone, this is the deadliest the country has seen in five years and it came from the hands of a 19-year-old with AR-15 rifle, who is now in custody.

The tragic events began after Nikolas Cruz entered the school and set off a fire alarm. Students came pouring out of the classroom and that is when the massacre began. When other students heard gunshots, they began locking classroom doors, turning the lights off and hiding under desks and chairs.

Since then, shocking footage from students themselves who were able to capture video of their experience via their phones has gone viral.

Some of the students texts sent to parents and loved ones can be found here.

Following yet another tragedy, the debate over gun control is reignited. Due to the 17 lives lost during the shooting, many students, including survivors from Douglas High School, have come together in a march to get attention on reinforcing gun rules. It is the first organised protest of the youth-led anti-gun movement that has swept the US since the attack. Thousands of Florida students walked out of their classrooms in solidarity with survivors.

Source: Carlos Garcia

A video following the students 7-hour journey to Florida’s capital can be found here. One student said she was disappointed by the meetings with lawmakers, who "danced around" their questions on gun control.

One specific student, Florence Yared, a 17-year-old survivor of the shooting, stated, "Today instead of returning to our studies, instead of preparing for exams and instead of grieving for dead classmates and teachers, we are out here advocating for a change." These matters are not something that young kids should have to worry about; students should be focused on school and having fun with their friends, not mourning the loss of them.

Source: Instagram

As a result of the students march, US president Donald Trump tweeted that he was working with law enforcement. Yet nothing has been done. With 18 school shootings already in 2018, the question one must ask: “how many lives does it take?” How many people have to die before guns laws become stricter, how many families have to suffer before people realize that a gun should not be as easily accessible as a piece of clothing?

Florida's Republican-controlled legislature on Tuesday rejected a Democratic motion to debate banning assault weapon, while another Republican legislator put forward a plan to permit certain adults in schools to carry guns.

Source: Olivier Douliery

With all these ideas being brought forward, it is evident that these marches have begun to leave a political impact. However, nothing has yet been done.

So, how many innocent lives have to be taken in order to see change?