After the Valentine’s Day shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, which left 17 people dead, surviving students-turned-activists have been at the center of much of the renewed national debate surrounding gun control.
In an attempt to keep that conversation going, Parkland students have organized the March For Our Lives event, a march scheduled to take place in Washington, D.C. on March 24. Event organizers explain their motivations on the March For Our Lives website:
March For Our Lives is created by, inspired by, and led by students across the country who will no longer risk their lives waiting for someone else to take action to stop the epidemic of mass school shootings that has become all too familiar. In the tragic wake of the seventeen lives brutally cut short in Florida, politicians are telling us that now is not the time to talk about guns. March For Our Lives believes the time is now.
In addition to the D.C. event, sibling marches are taking shape in nearly 700 communities around the globe. Among them, of course, is March for Our Lives Humboldt — a combined effort of high school students at Arcata High School and North Coast Preparatory Academy — which is scheduled to take place in Arcata in two weeks. Local event organizers today sent out the following press release which provides details on Humboldt’s march. Read it below:
Students from Arcata High School and North Coast Preparatory Academy are following in the footsteps of their peers from Parkland, Florida. They will hold a march against gun violence and the accessibility of AR-15s and bump stocks in solidarity with young people across the nation.
Marchers will assemble at noon on March 24, 2018 at the Arcata Playhouse for an hour of speeches and music, followed by a March to the Arcata Plaza and back.
There will be an opportunity for sign and button making starting at 11:30 a.m. Attendees are encouraged to bring signs and good walking shoes, and be prepared for bad weather.
“We are planning this march to spread our views on gun regulation because we don’t want to die in school,” stated a March for Our Lives Humboldt organizer Mira O’Barr.
The march is in collaboration with the national March for Our Lives event, created by survivors of the mass shooting in Parkland, FL.
Like the national event, the march in Humboldt has had some blowback from the community. An Instagram account was created specifically targeting March for Our Lives Humboldt, telling them “Don’t march, you will only be ruining lives not making them better.”
Despite the negativity targeted at the march, the Humboldt community has rallied in support of March for Our Lives Humboldt, with over 500 people having marked interested/going on Facebook.
Arcata Mayor Sofia Pereira came out in support saying “I don’t think we as a country would be having this conversation if it weren’t for high school students. High school students are the solution to this problem [of mass shootings].”