‘You work for us’: Protestors demand gun control from Florida Gov. Rick Scott
This is what democracy looks like
Tallahassee became the focal point of a historical declaration for gun law reform Wednesday afternoon, as a sea of reform advocates forged their way through the city streets toward the Capitol building.
At 11:00 am, the march began at Florida State University’s Wescott fountain. Students, parents, children and supporters were given a crash course in protest chants, before Mayor Andrew Gillum took to the steps to speak to the masses.
“Just by your walk, by your illustration today, you’re speaking for those babies that can’t speak for themselves,” Gillum said, referencing the Sandy Hook shooting. “You’re speaking for the 17 lives that were unnecessarily and avoidably snuffed out; you’re speaking for the kids and the generation of tomorrow so that they don’t have to take this very same march that you’re taking today.”
The marchers walked to meet up with the approximately 100 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students that traveled to the Capitol building to push for gun law reform and voice their anger and disappointment with current legislator’s efforts. Mayor Gillum linked arms with students as he lead the march downtown.
“I think it’s important that children are safe. It’s unfortunate when a problem becomes so large that many children are dying because of it. Something has to be done,” said Madeline Christenson, a 20-year-old protestor. “So to all of the politicians that are taking money from the NRA, there are so many more important things in life; like protecting the lives of other people.”
Early crowds at the Capitol were estimated to reach about 5000, with nearly 10,000 demonstrators uniting to make up the rally’s total estimated attendance. Legislators and Parkland students delivered a series of empowering and emotional statements to the growing crowd. Florida House Minority Leader Janet Cruz earned chants from the crowd during her speech.
“There’s no reason that children in the United States of America should understand how it feels to live in a war zone,” said Cruz. “Our legislative process here, you know what it is? It’s bullshit!”
Following the rally at the Capitol building, approximately 2000 demonstrators continued their protest at State Governor Rick Scott’s office. Thousands gathered around the doors of the office to chant their reminder to the governor, “You work for us!”
To continue the action initiated today, consider contacting your local legislators, registering to vote, attending social change events, and voting for those you trust to enact change. Remember, this is an election year and your vote matters.