SAN FRANCISCO (CBS SF) — Hundreds of thousands of students across America and in cities around the world came out to ‘March For Our Lives,’ calling for gun control and gun-free schools. The Bay Area was no exception.
The largest rally was in San Francisco where thousands marched with a powerful message — end gun violence.
Many activists here blame Washington for a lack of gun control in our country. One person who agrees with them is Senator Dianne Feinstein.
As a gun control activist herself who has been fighting for change for decades, Feinstein said this younger generation is what she hopes will finally make a difference.
“Young America is stepping up and they are stepping out, and they are saying never again,” she said. “Well, there’s only one way you can have ‘never again’ – is get these weapons of war off the streets and out of the schools.”
The students told KPIX 5 that frustration over the lack of gun control is felt in nearly every classroom. A pair of twins from Marin said they’ve participated in lockdown drills since they were 6-years-old, something many adults can’t fathom.
“It’s all in my power. I should be the one to be able to say I don’t want to have to worry about guns at 6 years old,” said 6th grader Dylan Dodson.
Her twin sister agrees.
“I think that it’s way too easy to buy a gun and I think that kids who are just 3 or 4 years older than me, or like, 5 years older than me, should not have access to guns,” said Charlotte Dodson.
Maya Segal is in the 9th grade and helped choose Saturday’s speakers, as well as set up the social media accounts for the ‘March For Our Lives’ San Francisco chapter.
She said when she was in middle school lockdown drills were always stressful for her.
“I was definitely scared… we had a code for our lockdown drill, and I couldn’t remember it,” said Segal. “I was always worried that they would call for a lockdown and I wouldn’t know.”
Youth advocates like Leo Mercer from Mercer Brotherhood spoke to the crowd of thousands and encouraged adults to take more time to listen what kids really need.
“It’s something as simple as just talking to people, talking to young people. What’s going on with you? Oh, this is going on with me. Ok, let me see how I can support you,” he said.
Gun control advocates here said the movement against gun violence can’t end here. It needs to carry over to the polls.
“So we need the voting generation, we need millennials, we need Baby Boomers, we need everybody to vote,” said student Kai Levenson-Cupp. “We need everybody to vote out NRA-funded politicians because they aren’t doing anything, and their silence is leading to the death of children.”