Survivors of the mass shooting that killed 17 people at a Florida high school will stop in Charleston as they take their gun reform activism across the country this summer.
Students from Marjory Stoneman-Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla. will join Lowcountry Students for Political Action for two events in July 31: A roundtable discussion with the families of Mother Emanuel shooting victims and a town hall with local, state, and national politicians, according to organizer and recent Ashley Ridge High graduate Jacob Gamble.
No guests or locations have been confirmed at this point. A press conference to announce more information is scheduled for Thursday.
“We will be discussing with survivors of the Mother Emanuel church shooting, organizing a town hall, and registering as many new voters as possible,” said Parkland student Jaclyn Corin in an email to CP.
Lowcountry Students for Political Action was one of the main organizers behind the North Charleston March for Our Lives on March 24. The event, a sister march to the national March for Our Lives organized by the Parkland students in Washington, D.C., drew early 2,000 people to Riverfront Park in support of stricter gun laws. [content-2] The so-called “Charleston loophole” is one federal law eyed for reform. It allows three days for a federal background check to turn up any red flags. After that, a gun can legally be sold regardless of whether or not a check was completed. The loophole allowed Dylann Roof to successfully buy the gun he used to kill nine people at Mother Emanuel. Information about his drug arrest was not properly entered into records databases by state and local law enforcement, thus making it difficult for the FBI to deny the purchase.
In Parkland, 14 students and three staff members were killed in six minutes when a former student walked into Stoneman-Douglas High School with an AR-15 style rifle on February 14.
The Parkland student activists will kick-off their summer tour this week at the Chicago Peace March in Chicago on June 15, where they will stand alongside Chance the Rapper and Jennifer Hudson, according to the Chicago Tribune. [content-4] The students will make 50 stops in 20 states. They will also visit all 27 congressional district in Florida to put pressure on leaders to enact tougher gun restrictions.
“We’re going to places where the NRA has bought and paid for politicians who refuse to take simple steps to save our lives — and we’ll be visiting a number of communities that have been affected by gun violence to meet fellow survivors and use our voices to amplify theirs,” reads the website for the March for Our Lives Road for Change.