Teens Walk Out of School, March 10 Miles to Shooting Site

Florida students demand end to gun violence
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Feb 21, 2018 12:10 AM CST
Teens Walk Out of School, March 10 Miles to Shooting Site
West Boca Raton Community High School students sophomore Leona Zaborsky, 16, right, and senior Julia Wheeler, 18, hug after reaching Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., Tuesday, Feb. 20, 2018.   (Amy Beth Bennett/South Florida Sun-Sentinel via AP)

Hundreds of students walked out of their Florida high school Tuesday and made their way to the site of a school shooting 10 miles away in a show of solidarity for bringing an end to gun violence, the AP reports. "It has to be tougher. People are blaming it that he has mental illness, but it's not only that. You have to understand that he can go and get a weapon of mass destruction before he can go and get a beer at a bar. That's not OK," said Isaac Louden, who locked arms with a handful of West Boca High classmates as he walked the final steps to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High and was met with a roar of cheers from waiting students. The event started as a moment of silence inside the school for the 17 students and teachers killed last week, but the West Boca students refused to end it there.

They pushed aside police blocking the front of the school and a sea of students ran out. "The emotion and the adrenalin was just so big in the atmosphere that we all decided to just keep walking," said Candace Taylor, a 14-year-old freshman. Along the way, students chanted "MSD Strong," and "we want change; we want peace." Many held signs calling for stricter gun laws and others smeared red paint under their eyes to honor the school colors at Douglas High. Several schools across Florida and the country have held similar walkouts in the wake of the shooting. Earlier Tuesday, Stoneman Douglas shooting survivors boarded a bus for Tallahassee to call for gun reform. (On Monday, teens staged a "lie-in" at the White House.)

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