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Southern Indiana students demand to be heard on gun violence

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Thousands from across nation join DC's student-fueled March for Our Lives

For her, Saturday's rally in Washington, D.C., was highly personal - her friends Joaquin Oliver and Martin Duque died in the mass shooting that killed 17 people at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14. "If pro-gun lawmakers are voted out because of the actions of students then this march will have made a big difference".

Some of the speakers were planned, some were members of the crowd that wanted to give their say. Among the ones already capturing the world's imagination was Emma Gonzalez's address (video above).

He and other students want assault weapons and high-capacity magazines banned, and the age limit raised to 21 for gun purchases.

The protesters, many of them high school students, claim that the youth leadership of the initiative is what will set it apart from previous attempts to enact stronger gun-control legislation.

During my senior year at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, I participated in AP Government with the expertise of my teacher, Mr. "We felt sort of a fellowship with American students because we're all in the same boat". "Even if there is some small issue that they don't necessarily stand with us on they stand with us and that's what matters".

"These demands only scratch the surface of what we are trying to achieve".

"Today we just came out to say that we're exhausted of feeling unsafe in our schools, we're exhausted of going to school every day worrying about if we're going to be next", 15-year-old Kaelyn Halter said. "If we can get Americans overseas to vote in 2018, that can give us that Congress that passes legislation we care about". The article How to Fight for Gun Reform After the March for Our Lives outlines seven things to do, including researching gun laws in your state and effectively using social media.

"I'm here because I've been personally affected by the lack of gun control and I believe guns have taken over the minds of individuals who want an easy way out of their dilemma", Middleton said. "It just doesn't make a lot of sense".

It was the latest display of frustration by students with the national debate on gun control.

"I've practiced lock downs and active shooter drills for as long as I can remember", said Duren. There's dating violence; there's shootouts in my streets. "I was a young teenager that I heard about this issue of gun violence, finding out about a shooting, so I wrote about when I was in seventh grade and we heard about the Sandy Hook shooting". However, I can speak on behalf of most of my close friends when I say that it is relieving to see our town's privilege being put towards such an important cause. In Salt Lake City, Utah, hundreds of demonstrators held signs such as "AR-15's EMPOWER the people", and "Criminals love gun control", The New York Times reported. Most of the March's vitality stemmed from their participation, and though the signs they carried didn't compare with the wit of the signs that were brandished during the Women's' March in January - still there were some that caught my eye. Here's what they took away from the experience, in their own words.

A recent poll from the University of Texas and the Texas Tribune found that most Texans support closing background check loopholes at gun shows and over the Internet.

Students also called for a repeal of the Dickey Amendment, which prevents the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention from advocating or studying gun control in a scientific manner.

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