Thousands of San Diegans rally for gun reform


Jake Smiley

March for Our Lives in downtown San Diego

Jake Smiley, Staff Writer

       San Diegans, young and old, marched through Waterfront Park to Pacific Highway on March 24 to rally for gun reform. According to the San Diego Police Department, an estimated 5,000 to 10,000 people showed up to March for Our Lives San Diego. March for Our Lives was led by students across the United States. More than 800 cities participated in the marches worldwide.

       “Thoughts and prayers are not enough to honor the victims of gun violence,” according to the March for Our Lives San Diego Facebook page. The marches stemmed from the Feb. 14 mass shooting at a Parkland, Florida high school, where 17 people were killed. The recent marches were organized by a group of students who survived the shooting. The 19-year-old accused shooter, Nikolas Cruz, was a former student at Parkland High School. According to authorities, Cruz legally purchased an AR-15 rifle a year ago. According to the March for Our Lives website, the main purpose of the march was to “pass a law to ban the assault weapons frequently used to carry out mass shootings.” According to multiple reports, 17 school shootings have occurred since the beginning of 2018.

       White House deputy press secretary Lindsay Walters issued a statement after the marches that said, “Keeping our children safe is a top priority of the President’s, which is why he urged Congress to pass the Fix NICS and STOP School Violence Acts, and signed them into law.”

       According to US Congress, Fix NICS, or National Instant Criminal Background Check System, concentrates on thorough reporting for thorough records. This would help retailers have more accurate information on a person that might be trying to buy a gun. The STOP School Violence Act of 2018 is a grant program that would provide better training for students, teachers, and local law enforcement. It also focuses on providing funds for the use of metal detectors and “inserting mental health professionals” in schools. It is not known if the marches impacted certain lawmakers who currently support the sale of assault weapons to civilians in America.