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Let the kids march

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Let the kids march

Last Saturday, hundreds of thousands of people, many of them high schoolers, participated in the March for Our Lives that took place in Washington D.C.

According to a petition on the official organizers’ website, the three main demands of the marchers were:

  1. Ban the sale of assault weapons.
  2. Ban the sale of high-capacity magazines, which would restrict the amount of ammunition a gun can discharge without reloading.
  3. Strengthen background checks and close the gun show loophole.

While the marchers received widespread support from both celebrities and everyday Americans alike, several people criticized the young marchers for demanding change for laws they know little about.

For example, conservative radio host Kevin McCullough attacked the marchers for having, “little more than a junior high level of education under their belt.”

He then said, “The political left, driven by a leftist media, and financed by uber-rich and hard-left celebrities are willing to use them, and to continue to use them to advance their socialist utopia ideals.”

First, criticism like this fails to acknowledge that these kids have seen gun violence first-hand, so it isn’t as if they are protesting in ignorance.

Second, gun violence is not a partisan issue. According to polls, measures such as stronger background checks have near-universal support from all Americans, not just “the political left.”

Lastly, these kids have just as much a right to express their beliefs and exercise their civic rights as any adult. The Supreme Court ruled in Tinker v. Des Moines that students, even if they’re under 18 and can’t vote yet, are still able to express their First Amendment rights.

In the tweeted words of Republican CNN commentator, Ana Navarro: “When in the hell did we become a country where it’s ok for adults to attack teenagers who just survived a mass shooting and experienced the death of friends & mentors?”

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