The Downey Legend

Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting

Nathalie Sibal, Writer

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A gunman identified as Nikolas Cruz opened fire at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School located in Parkland, Florida on Feb. 14. Cruz used an AR-15 assault rifle to shoot students in hallways and classrooms. This action resulted in 17 deaths, with the ages of victims ranging from 14 to 49 years old. Cruz was arrested at 3:41 P.M. two miles away from the high school. Since then, the mass shooting has gained widespread attention due to various social media users expressing their shock and sadness for the families affected.

 

Yujany Sarabia, 11, discusses her initial reaction to the incident.

 

“I was surprised, but not as shocked as school shootings started happening more often, which is very sad,” Sarabia said. “I was upset by the idea that nothing had been done to prevent it from happening. I feel bad for the kids having to go through such a horrible experience.”

 

Recent reports have revealed that Nikolas Cruz, a former Douglas High School student, was expelled for behavior problems. Brandon Minioff, a senior and a fellow classmate, reported to NBC News that Cruz was known for doing “reckless stuff”. Another classmate, Joshua Charo, told The Miami Herald that Cruz only talked about his admiration for “guns, knives and hunting”. A month prior to the shooting, an anonymous tip was sent to the FBI about Cruz’s intentions to open fire in the public high school.

 

Dhafni Prillwitz, 11, believes that the school and the FBI should have taken action in order to foil Cruz’s plan.

 

“I believe, whether it is the school staff or the FBI, someone should have taken it seriously rather than disregarding the danger the way they did,” Prillwitz said. “The school should have better identified the violent patterns he had been expressing regularly, and the FBI should have utilized its authority to check up on Nikolas and make sure he wasn’t actually armed and dangerous.”

 

The survivors of the Douglas High School shooting began fighting for stricter gun laws. Students, such as Emma Gonzalez, have delivered speeches during rallies that advocated for gun control. Thousands of Floridians continue to show their support for the survivors by joining them in protests. On Feb. 20, the Florida House of Representatives rejected the motion to debate on a bill that would ban assault rifles throughout the state.

 

Brandon Marquez, 11, disagrees with the Florida House of Representatives’ decision to ignore the bill.

 

“I think they should place restrictions,” Marquez said. “They should limit the kind of weapons people have. Nobody needs ARs in their home. If other countries have done it, why is it so difficult for the U.S.?”

 

Broward County Public School officials announced that students will re-enter on Feb.28. Building 12, the place of the shooting, will be torn down and replaced by a memorial dedicated to the 17 victims.

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Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting