From KERA, KACU and Marfa Public Radio:
Energized from March For Our Lives rallies across the nation, thousands of teens say they’re ready to stay active on working for tougher gun laws. The protests were inspired by high school students in Parkland, Florida – survivors of the Valentine’s Day shooting where 17 people died.
Texans marched in their hometowns, too.
In downtown Dallas, a raucous, energized crowd swelled into the thousands Saturday to rally against gun violence in schools.
At the marches, organized by students, high schoolers are demanding what they call common sense gun laws, like tougher background checks and an end to high-capacity magazines. They say they’re ready to stay politically active to assure tougher gun laws.
In Dallas, some of the marchers were even younger, like 11-year-old Audrey Ditzler from Denton.
“We always do lockdown drills more frequently than usual,” she says. “They tell you if anyone comes into the school with a gun to get down and if they shoot at you to get under the desk.”
As a gun show went on in Abilene’s convention center, 300 protesters gathered three blocks away, holding signs that said things like, “Arm teachers with resources, not guns.”
Attendees included high school students planning for continuing protests, and at least one gun owner who thinks there should be control of firearms to protect schools against violence.
Students and community members from Marfa and surrounding areas gathered at the Presidio County Courthouse to march for gun control.
Marfa fourth grader Louise Culbertson organized this march with her friends.
“When I heard the news that 17 students died from the Florida school, and I heard that so many people were marching around the world, I wanted to march here to support them,” says Culbertson.
El Paso student protesters gathered downtown. They listened to musical performances, and heard form local Democratic Congressman and Senate candidate Beto O’Rourke.
Student organizers say that while gun violence is rare in their schools, threats have risen so much since the Parkland shooting that they are no longer allowed to carry backpacks to class.
Listen to the full story in the player above.