Student organizers of the protest, dubbed the “March for Our Lives,” told US media on Sunday that they are determined to use protests to make the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas a turning point in the national debate over gun control.
The organizers said they will demand members of the US Congress to pass gun control legislation, which has always been opposed and foiled by the National Rifle Association (NRA), a powerful lobby group that advocates for gun rights.
“We are losing our lives while the adults are playing around,” Cameron Kasky, an 11th-grader told ABC News. “This is about us creating a badge of shame for any politicians accepting money from the NRA and using us as collateral.”
"This isn't about the GOP (Republicans), this isn't about the Democrats,” he added. “This is about the adults. We feel neglected and at this point, you're either with us or against us."
Kasky said the point is to "create a new normal where there's a badge of shame on any politician who's accepting money from the NRA.”
On Saturday, thousands students and their parents, as well as politicians, took part in a rally in Fort Lauderdale, close to Parkland. The protesters chanted, "vote them out!" and “shame on you” to US lawmakers and President Donald Trump for accepting donations from the NRA.
During the rally, Emma Gonzalez, a student at Marjory Stohneman Douglas High School, took to the podium and attacked US President Donald and other politicians for accepting political donations from the NRA.
The Republican-controlled Congress last year revoked Obama-era regulations meant to make it harder for those with severe mental illness to pass FBI background checks for guns, saying the rule deprived the mentally ill of their gun rights.
Nikolas Cruz, an ex-student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, opened fire on Wednesday with an AR-15-style assault rifle, killing 17 people in his former school. It was the second-deadliest shooting at a public school in US history.
It was also the 18th school shooting since January 1 in the United States, which loses around 33,000 people to gun violence every year.