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The Valentine’s Day Shooting

Arianna Hamilton, Beat Reporter

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     On February 14th, a 19 year old boy named Nikolas Cruz, showed up to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida and opened fire with an AR-15 style rifle. In 6 minutes, he had killed 15 students and 2 staff members. This resulted in many protests against the gun laws in the U.S. and more support to those with mental issues.

     The media says the reasoning behind the shooting was that Nikolas Cruz had a mental illness. Even if this is true, there should be a law preventing people with these issues from even purchasing a firearm. That is only my opinion, but I’m sure many would agree. According to    The New York Times, “In Florida, an AR-15 is easier to buy than a handgun” (Richard A. Opell Jr., The New York Times). In my opinion, this shouldn’t be possible. Why would you need an AR-15 anyways? Definitely not for self defense. If you need a gun for self defense why not just buy a simple handgun. There is no need for people to own such a powerful gun.

     Recently there have been protests that have started and all of them have gotten lots of attention from the media. I think protests make a useful impact if teens are involved. It shows that even though we’re young we do have an opinion. It is our safety anyways. Right? People think that because we’re on our phones all the time, we don’t read the news or pay attention to what’s happening around us. And for some people that may be true. I know for sure that even if I am on my phone scrolling through Instagram all the time, I still see posts and links to events like this shooting.

     A very popular protest is the “Walkout”. According to Fox News, “For 17 minutes at 10 A.M. across each time zone on March 14, students, school faculty and supporters around the world will walk out of their schools to honor those killed in the massacre at the Parkland high school earlier this year and to protest gun violence” (Kaitlyn Schalhorn, Fox News). In my opinion, the “Walkout” protest isn’t the greatest idea. Yes, it will draw attention to the conflict but it will also make things at school very chaotic, especially if the teachers do not participate. I like the idea of honoring the victims from this horrible tragedy. But hey, two birds one stone.

     I think this is an important subject for the middle school because this is affecting teens and kids our age or just a couple years older. These are our rights, and it’s our safety. So we should have a say on it. I’m also not saying that it’s completely the guns fault. Obviously, Cruz was very corrupted and unstable. He needed help and the school knew that yet they decided not to help him. We need to be nice to each other, respect each other. I know you hear it all the time but it’s so vital to life. Just simply complimenting someone or having a small conversation with someone can change their mood in an instant. Nikolas Cruz hasn’t been trialed or sentenced yet but he has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder.

 

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