' Several Thousand Students & Adults Participate In "March For Our Lives Long Beach," Student Speakers and Local Pols Seek Action, Vow Votes, To Advance Gun Control

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Several Thousand Students & Adults Attend "March For Our Lives Long Beach," Student Speakers and Local Pols Seek Action, Vow Votes, To Advance Gun Control

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(March 24, 2018, 9:05 p.m.) -- A crowd of several thousand people -- a mix of students (mainly) with adults of parent age (many) and grandparent age (some) -- converged on LB's Bixby Park this morning (March 24) for a "March for our Lives LB" rally and march, one of several hundred taking place across the country.

LBREPORT.com provides extended on-demand VIDEO coverage via YouTube (embedded below) and Facebook as well as a Photo Gallery below.

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Wilson High's choir director, Isaiah Walker, made introductory remarks (and the choir performed Sam Cooke's 1960's civic rights themed A Change Is Gonna Come. In remarks as we were setting up, Mayor Garcia told the crowd that in many ways adults "had failed our kids," encouraged the young people to continue their involvement and added "enough is enough."

The first student speaker was event co-organizer Trevor Schnack (CA Academy of Math and Science). Mr. Schnack used hand-written notes until a breeze propelled the pages off the podium and he spoke off the cuff, drawing applause. Other student speakers were Montserrat Pineda, Josie Hahn and Tia Shackeroff (the latter reading a poem.) After marching downtown and back, concluding speakers included event co-organizer Sterling Raiklen (Millikan High) plus Coco Sanabria, Adriana Luna and Caleb Zaldana.


Also addressing the sea of new or soon-to-be-new voters plus their parents at the initial rally were 3rd district Councilwoman Suzie Price, L.A. County Supervisor Janice Hahn and LBUSD Board President Megan Kerr.


At the start of March 13 LB City Council meeting, Mayor Garcia gave Mr. Schnack non-agendized podium time to promote the rally and march.

On March 5, the LB School Board voted 5-0 to approve a resolution (by President Kerr) which recited:


WHEREAS, all students deserve safe environments where they can learn without fear of gun violence; and

WHEREAS, no parents should send their children to school fearing they may never come home; and

WHEREAS, more than 150,000 American students have experienced a school shooting on campus since the Columbine High School massacre in 1999; and

WHEREAS, from Columbine to Virginia Tech to Sandy Hook to Parkland, the lives of hundreds of students and school employees have been lost to the plague of gun violence; and

WHEREAS, among high-income nations, 91 percent of children under 15 years old and 92 percent of youth between 15 and 24 years old who have been killed by guns lived in the United States; and

WHEREAS, the mass murder of students, teachers and staff at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School was committed using a legally purchased assault rifle originally engineered for soldiers to rapidly, efficiently and at great distances kill large numbers of opposing soldiers in war; and similar weapons were used in mass murders in Newtown, Conn.; Aurora, Colo.; Orlando, Fla.; San Bernardino, Calif.; Sutherland Springs, Texas; Las Vegas, Nev.; and more; and

WHEREAS, American school children necessarily spend increasingly more time participating in active shooter drills, which create significant anxiety among students and teachers and detract from classroom learning; and

WHEREAS, America’s students -- led by the courageous young people of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida --- are now leading the charge to prevent further tragedy; and

WHEREAS, the responsibility for preventing gun violence in schools cannot be relegated to school districts alone;

NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that the Board of Education of the Long Beach Unified School District supports commonsense legislation to reduce gun violence in American schools, including banning assault weapons, high-capacity magazines and other accessories that circumvent the ban on automatic firearms, increasing the ages at which people may buy various categories of weapons, implementing more effective background checks, requiring the registration and licensing of guns similar to the registration and licensing of cars, closing loopholes in the sales of guns at gun shows and online, and other vetting processes;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this Board supports legislation at the state and national levels to fund data-gathering and scientific research on the causes and prevention of gun violence;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this Board supports finding methods to combat the stranglehold that gun manufacturers and the broader gun lobby have on policy in this arena, and such methods may include supporting further divestment of pension funds from the gun industry;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this Board opposes counterproductive and dangerous ideas like arming teachers;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that this Board supports students, from Parkland to Long Beach and everywhere between, who demonstrate leadership by calling for state legislative and Congressional action on this issue, and that this Board will listen to local students and amplify their voices to more effectively fight this scourge.



As previously reported by LBREPORT.com, on March 14 various LBUSD high schools allowed students to exit their classes from 10:00 a.m. to roughly 10:40 a.m. for on-campus outdoor events on marking the one month anniversary of the Florida school mass shooting.


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