By Marissa Burd
February 14 is Valentine’s Day. Many high school students woke up on that day this year with plans of spending it with the people they love most and giving cards, flowers, or chocolates.
One thing that is certain is that the students of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School will remember this Valentine’s Day forever.
Those students did not expect to lose 17 of their classmates that day.
19-year-old Nikolas Cruz arrived at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida with an AR-15.
Previously, Cruz was a student at the high school but was expelled as a junior for his behavior.
With that assault rifle, Cruz took the lives of fourteen students and three teachers.
The shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas is one of the deadliest school shootings since Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012, which took 26 lives, says an article written by CNN.
Yet, Marjory Stoneman Douglas is the deadliest high school shooting since the Columbine High School shooting in 1999.
According to an article from History.com, the two gunman took 17 lives during the Columbine Shooting, including their very own.
“So why does this keep happening?” and “What can we do to prevent it?” are common questions racing through high school hallways nowadays.
Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School have decided to come up with solutions to these questions, rather than simply asking them.
Those students devastated by the loss of their classmates and teachers traveled to Florida’s state capital, Tallahassee, in attempt to ban assault rifles.
One solution the Florida legislature has brain stormed is a $67 million program that will arm school staff.
Big companies from across the country like Dick’s Sporting Goods and Walmart have taken action with Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and raised their minimum age to buying a gun to 21, rather than 18.
Marjory Stoneman students are now required to wear clear backpacks, which were provided by the district.
High schools across the country participated in the National School Walkout on March 14 - a month after the Marjory Stoneman Douglas shooting. This was organized to protest gun control laws and took place at 10 a.m. on that Wednesday.
Rather than protesting and walking out of school, students from Red Lion High School were invited to walk to the Fitzkee Center and take 17 minutes to reflect the tragedy in Florida and remember those 17 young lives that were lost a month prior.
On April 20, another National School Walkout is scheduled to take place at 10 a.m. to remember the lives that were taken in the Columbine High School shooting, exactly 19 years prior.