The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

The student news site of El Camino College

El Camino College The Union

Students join nationwide protest to end gun violence

Some students at El Camino College were protesting gun violence. Photo credit: Miyung Kim

ECC students participated in a nationwide protest today, Wednesday, March 14, in which students and faculty exited classes in an attempt to challenge inaction in Congress regarding gun violence following the Florida school shooting exactly one month prior.

“(With) enough little people, enough students, enough kids, you can create something big, a movement that a lot of people can see and if enough people are talking about it, change is gonna happen, it just takes persistence, a lot of dedication, and hard work,” Matthew Cabrera, 19, philosophy major, said.

Cabrera was found giving a speech to the crowd near the Art and Behavioral Science Building.

“I was giving the reason for what the walkout was. (The) 17 minutes symbolize 17 kids that lost their lives, how every one of us has the power to go out and change something. They have the power to vote, they have the power to speak up,” Cabrera said.

Students from across the campus gathered to support the cause, including 19-year-old accounting major Nestor Brizuela.

“It’s almost our social responsibility to be here, there’s always a tragedy every other day. You know, you just always have to speak up about it. This isn’t just for the Florida shooting, this is for every other shooting since and before,” Brizuela said.

The protest on the El Camino campus and across the nation was meant to bring the national issue of gun violence into the spotlight.

When speaking of Congress, Brizuela said, “It’s their responsibility to make things how we want them, and obviously we want them a certain way, and congress should be looking to make them that way.”

Other students also had comments towards Congress.

“Think more about the kids than the money. It’s their future and their lives and they have dreams, this is a time for the kids now,” Kiana Galvan, 23, political science major, said.

Cabrera also had a statement for Congress, saying he wanted them “to listen to us, to listen to those who don’t have a voice. It seems like now they’re here to serve themselves, to serve the rich, the one percent. My ultimate goal is for the little guy to speak up and for Congress to listen.”

Aside from the walkout today, survivors of the Florida shooting are organizing “March For Our Lives” in Washington D.C. The rally is meant to protest gun violence, and is expected to have as many as 500,000 people participating. This march will be accompanied by over 700 marches all around the world, the closest being around 5 miles from El Camino on Manhattan Beach Boulevard.

“Come out March 24 and march with us. You know, hand in hand, and give voice to something that is bigger than (your)selves,” Cabrera said.

The walkout today was an indicator that many in our school are dissatisfied with our country’s current policies, and that those who are dissatisfied are making their dissatisfaction known, such as Brizuela, who had a message for EC students.

“Have your voice heard,” Brizuela said. “We’re young. We’re like the new generation. We’re the future and we’re the people that are going to have to live on.”

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