Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

Students & Celebrities Speak Out at March for Our Lives. Aired 1-2p ET

Aired March 24, 2018 - 13:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


[13:00:00] (SINGING)

(CHEERING)

(APPLAUSE)

ALISYN CAMEROTA, CNN ANCHOR: Wow. OK. When it comes to star power, it's hard to find bigger stars, at least for Broadway, than Lin-Manuel Miranda, of course, from "Hamilton." And that was Ben Platt from "Dear Evan Hanson." A beautiful song, everyone in the crowd seemed to love.

There's been all sorts of performances here that are punctuated by the speeches of students who have come here from Parkland. They have been giving the most passionate speeches. They're calling on lawmakers to listen to them. And then, of course, you're hearing all these beautiful performances as well.

I'm Alisyn Camerota, here in Washington at the March for Our Lives. There are marches going on around the world today trying to stop gun violence.

Obviously, there have been massacres before, but something about the Stoneman Douglas High School massacre has galvanized all of these teenagers around the country and they've come here to Washington, D.C., and so many other cities. You can see here. There's Parkland, Florida. That's what they're doing today in Parkland where protesters are turning out and marching. And in so many cities around the country.

Let's go to CNN's Jason Carroll now. He is in New York City with what's happening there.

So, Jason, we're looking at Boston for a moment. You can see the streets, how filled they are.

Jason, tell us what's happening in New York at this hour.

JASON CARROLL, CNN NATIONAL CORRSEPONDENT: The marchers now have stopped at a point on Sixth Avenue. We've heard from so many people, from so many tragedies, from Las Vegas to Sandy Hook.

Also joining us right now are some of the family members from Gina Rose Manito.

Her uncle with us today.

Give me a sense of why you came out today, what you hope to accomplish.

UNIDENTIFIED UNCLE OF GINA ROSE MANITO: We're from New York. We want to be a part of this movement that's been inspired by Gina's schoolmates. These kids are amazing. They've accomplished so much. Gina would have been right there with them. The kind of kid she would have grown up to be. Strong, outspoken, doing what's right. We're here to support them today. Also, obviously celebrate the memory of our great lost family member, and we want to make people aware and hope that nobody has to go through what my family's gone through. I hope the legislatures get the message and like the legislation that my brother, Gina's father, helped push through and lead through the Florida state legislature. Let's get on that. Let's get it going.

CARROLL: Gina was a student at Stoneman Douglas, 14 years old. We've heard from so many of her classmates, not just here, but also Washington, D.C.

The question is, what are your hopes in terms of going forward, tomorrow, the next day, the next month?

UNIDENTIFIED UNCLE OF GINA ROSE MANITO: Well, I hope for my brother and his family that they can continue to carry on. That's our biggest challenge. That's our biggest concern. We love them. We want them to know that.

And we hope that change comes. We hope that the legislatures hear this. Stop taking the money from the NRA. Do what's right. Compromise. Make change. Nobody's looking to take your guns. We just want to stop kids from getting killed.

CARROLL: Boy, obviously, I think a lot of people share your feelings, and your voice is most definitely being here today.

Thank you, Michael. Really appreciate it. Thank you very much.

Alisyn, we're going to turn it back over to you as we continue to march down Sixth Avenue. Many of these people are going to keep marching and their voices are going to continue to be heard -- Alisyn?

CAMEROTA: Jason, thank you very much.

Let's listen in right now to what's happening on the main stage. There's a student named Zion Kelly from Washington, D.C., and his brother was killed. Let's listen to him.

[13:05:12] ZION KELLY, STUDENT: We shared everything, including issues. I spent time with him every day because we went to the same school, shared the same friends. We even shared the same room.

(CHEERING)

(APPLAUSE) KELLY: Can you imagine how it would be to lose someone that close to you. Sadly, too many of my friends and parents can. This school year alone, my school lost two students to senseless gun violence, Paris Brown and my brother, Zaire Kelly.

(CHEERING)

KELLY: This year alone in January there were six students killed under the age of 19 by guns here in Washington, D.C.

In my brother's name, my family's proposing the Zaire Kelly Public Safety Zone Amendment Act of 2018.

(CHEERING)

KELLY: This act aimed to create safe passage zones for students to and from schools and other activities by expanding the definition of a student. But this amendment, a student would be defined by any person enrolled in a public or private day care center, elementary school, vocational school, secondary school -- excuse me --

(CHEERING)

KELLY: -- college, junior college, university. It expands gun-free zones to include recreation centers. This amendment means that every student in Washington, D.C. would carry the protection of my brother's name, ensuring safety as they travel to and from school in our city.

My name is Zion Kelly. Just like all of you, I've had enough.

(CHEERING)

(APPLAUSE)

CAMEROTA: OK, that was Zion Kelly. His brother was shot and killed.

The next student you're about to see take the stage, that's David Hogg. We met him in the hours right after the shooting. He's from Stoneman Douglas. Let's listen to him.

DAVID HOGG, STUDENT: -- every student's life in Florida, $1.05.

OK. The cool grasp of corruption shackles the District of Columbia. The winter is over. Change is here. The sun shines on a new day. And the day is ours. For the first time, voters show up 18 percent of the time in midterm elections. Not anymore.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: Now, who here is going to vote in the 2018 election?

(CHEERING)

HOGG: If you listen real close, you can hear the people in power shaking. (CHEERING)

HOGG: They've gotten used to being protective of their position, the safety of inaction. Inaction is no longer safe. And to that we say no more.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: Ninety-six people -- 96 people die every day from guns in our country. Yet, most representatives have no public stance on guns. And to that we say no more!

(CHEERING)

HOGG: We're going to make this the voting issue. We're going to take this to every election to every state and every city. We're going to make sure the best people get in our elections to run not as politicians but as Americans. Because this --

(CHEERING0

HOGG: -- this is not cutting it.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: When people try to suppress your vote and there are people who stand against you because you're too young, we say no more.

(SHOUTING)

HOGG: When politicians say that your voice doesn't matter because the NRA owns them, we say no more.

(SHOUTING)

HOGG: When politicians send their thoughts and prayers with no action, we say no more.

(SHOUTING)

HOGG: And to those politicians supported by the NRA that allow the continued slaughter of our children and our future, I say get your resumes ready.

(CHEERING)

[13:10:00] HOGG: Today is the beginning of spring. And tomorrow is the beginning of democracy.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: Now is the time to come together not as Democrats, not as Republicans, but as Americans.

(CHEERING0 HOGG: Americans of the same flesh and blood that care about one thing and one thing only, and that's the future of the country and the children that are going to lead it.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: Now, they will try to separate us in demographics. They will try to separate us by religion, race, congressional district and class. They will fail.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: We will come together. We will get rid of these public servants that only serve the gun lobby. And we will save lives! You are those heroes.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: Lastly, let's put the USA over the NRA.

(CHEERING)

HOGG: This is the start of the spring and the blossoming of our democracy. So let's take this to our local legislatures and let's take this to midterm elections. Because without the persistent heat, without the persistence of voters and Americans everywhere getting out to every election, democracy will not flourish, but it can, and it will.

So I say to those politicians, I say change will not come. I say we will not stop until every man, every woman, every child and every American can live without fear of gun violence. And to that, I say no more.

(SHOUTING)

HOGG: Thank you, I love you all, god bless all of you and god bless America. We can, and we will change the world.

(CHEERING)

CAMEROTA: OK, you've been listening there to David Hogg, a student, a senior, at Stoneman Douglas High School. We met him in just the hours after the massacre. He was one of the very first students that we interviewed. And since then, he has become one of the loudest and most vocal voices. Because he has been so outspoken, he has taken a lot of criticism from lots of people. In fact, he's even been the subject of some crazy conspiracy theories. But that's not stopping him. As you can see, he very passionately took the podium and he talked about how these teenagers, these 18-year-olds, will be voting in the midterms. And he talks about how he thinks that this, above all, will get politicians' attention.

This now is Naomi Wadler. She is also a student. Let's listen.

NAOMI WADLER, STUDENT: -- an African-American girl who was the victim of gun violence in her school in Alabama after the Parkland shooting. I am here today to represent Cortland Arrington. I am here today to represent Hadiya Pendleton. I --

(CHEERING)

WADLER: I am here today to represent Titania Thompson. Who at 16 was shot dead at her home in Washington, D.C. I'm here today to acknowledge and represent the African-American girls whose stories don't make the front page of every national newspaper.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: These stories don't lead on the evening news.

I represent the African-American women who are victims of gun violence, who are simply statistics instead of vibrant beautiful girls full of potential.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: It is my privilege to be here today. I am, indeed, full of privilege. My voice has been heard. I'm here to acknowledge their stories. To say they matter. To say their names. Because I can. And I was asked to be.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: For far too long, these names, these black girls and women, have been just numbers. I'm here to say never again for those girls, too.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: I am here to say that everyone should value those girls, too.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: People have said that I am too young to have these thoughts on my own.

(SHOUTING)

WADLER: People have said that I'm a tool of some nameless adult.

(SHOUTING)

WADLER: It's not true.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: My friends and I might still be 11, and we might still be in elementary school, but we know. We know life isn't equal for everyone. And we know what's right and wrong.

(CHEERING) WADLER: We also know that we stand in the shadow of the capitol. And we know that we have seven short years until we too have the right to vote.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: So I'm here today to honor the words of on Toni Morrison --

(CHEERING)

WADLER: -- "If there is a book that you want to read but it hasn't been written yet, you must be the one to write it."

(CHEERING)

WADLER: I urge everyone here and everyone who hears my voice to join me in telling the stories that aren't told. To honor the girls, the women of color who were murdered at disproportionate rates in this nation.

(CHEERING)

WADLER: I urge each of you to help me write the narrative for this world and understand so that these girls and women are never forgotten.

Thank you.

(CHEERING)

(APPLAUSE)

[13:15:48] CAMEROTA: That was an 11 -- that was an 11-year-old elementary student, Naomi Wadler. And she talked about what gun violence has done in her mind and in her community. And she reminded everyone that she, too, will be voting at some point in the future.

I'm Alisyn Camerota. We're here in Washington, D.C. at the March for Our Lives. We'll have many more speakers and guests coming up. We'll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:20:30] CAMEROTA: Welcome back, everyone. I'm Alisyn Camerota. I'm in Washington, D.C., which is just one of the scenes of the marches for our lives that are happening across the country.

You can see Parkland, Florida, how many people have turned out there. That, of course, the site of the latest school massacre. Well, the one I should say, at least that galvanized all of this at Marjory Stoneman Douglas.

Then Washington, D.C., where I am. You can see in the Midwest, Chicago, and then Seattle, the crowd is gathering there as well, though it's 10:20 a.m.

So the shooting in Parkland, Florida, adds to a long list of gun related tragedies in the U.S.

It's been nearly three years since news reporter, Alisyn Parker, and photo journalist, Adam Ward, were attacked on live television in Roanoke, Virginia, and killed. Since that time, Allison's father has become a strong voice against gun violence in our country.

He and his wife, Barbara, join us now.

As the students from Parkland lead the charge on the stage and we'll cut back to them whenever we can.

Thank you both so much.

Andy, it is so nice to finally meet you in person.

ANDY PARKER, FATHER OF ALLISON ANDY PARKER: Indeed. Likewise, Alisyn.

CAMEROTA: Tell me why you both came here to Washington, D.C.

ANDY PARKER: We had to be here for these kids. We had to be here for Alisyn. And send a message to the people that aren't taking any action.

CAMEROTA: You say they're not taking any action. Things actually in the past 24 hours actually have happened. I mean, the president and the Department of Justice banned bump stocks. They passed the stop school violence act which is all about intervention. When you know a kid is dangerous, somehow being able to intervene and communicate with the police. There's been the Fix NICS. Slowly, incrementally, in the past 24 hours, it does feel as though things have happened.

ANDY PARKER: Well, and it is slow. And my fear, and I think the fear of these kids and us, you know, we're afraid the Republican-controlled majority is going to say see, we fixed it. That's all we're going to do. And when clearly that's not the case. We've got to ban assault weapons. We have to have universal background checks. We have to close gun show loopholes. We have to have gun violence restraining orders all across the country. I mean, those are just simple things that most gun owners agree with.

BARBARA PARKER, MOTHER OF ALLISON PARKER: Well, I think that these -- also, these children and these kids that are out here marching today, their voices are not going to stop. They're going to continue this. Every mass shooting, the voices rise. And then it dies down. They're not going to stop.

CAMEROTA: Hold those thoughts for a moment.

We want to listen in to the artist who just took the stage.

(SINGING)

(CHEERING)

(SINGING) [13:26:33] VIC MENSA, ARTIST: Thank you. My name is Vic Mensa.

(CHEERING)

(SINGING)

CAMEROTA: OK, that was Vic Mensa you've just been listening to. He also -- look, all these performances are so emotional, and the crowd seems to really be responding.

I want to get back to Barbara and Andy Parker, the parents of Alisyn Parker, the reporter who was killed on live television.

And so tell me, you guys, when you come to things like this -- and I know you're now part of this heartbreaking club you never wanted to be a part of. Is there solace in being around other victims of gun violence or sadness?

ANDY PARKER: A little bit of both. I tell you, you know, just walking around here today. It's -- it's heartwarming. I mean, people, you know, we have our sign with Allison's picture on it and people just come up and they have tears in their eyes. You end up being kind of the emotional steadier for them. It's just so touching and wonderful.

CAMEROTA: Barbara, why do you think this particular tragedy in Parkland, Florida, with these high school students, why has this galvanized this group of hundreds of thousands of people in a way the other tragedies didn't?

BARBARA PARKER: I think primarily is that they spoke out so quickly afterward. They're so eloquent. They're so not intimidated by the gun lobby or Congress or the president. They are horrified by what happened. And they're angry. I think that's a part of what we are. It's that anger that you turn into action.

ANDY PARKER: They came out swinging like we did. And I think that, you know, there were a bunch of them. They are little kids. These are young adults.

CAMEROTA: Absolutely. They are not taking their foot off the gas since that time. Exactly.

ANDY PARKER: No. And I think that's going to be the difference this time. I think, you know, as we talked before, the blue wave that you -- that started in the Virginia elections is now these kids are turning it into a tidal wave come the midterms.

CAMEROTA: What are you two calling for today? What do you want to see happen?

ANDY PARKER: I want to see the -- I want to see these kids not take their foot off the gas. You know, we spoke to some kids yesterday. And said look, we're all going to get out here tomorrow and it's going to be great. It's going to be a terrific event. We're going to pat ourselves on the back and say didn't we do something. So what then are you going to do tomorrow and the next day and next month. And that's what I want to see. I want to see them carry that energy forward. And get their -- go vote, get their friends to vote. And kick these guys to the curb that are standing in our way.

BARBARA PARKER: And to see these kids and what they're calling for. You know that they're some of our legislatures are going to check the box and say all right, we just did some things and now go on to something else. We can't do that. This is a start.

CAMEROTA: That will be obviously the challenge that these kids, as you know, have already planned something for next month, for April 20th, another school walkout. It seems as though they're aware they always need a new date of something to look forward to.

BARBARA PARKER: Absolutely.

ANDY PARKER: Steady drum beat. That's what we've got to have. And I'm encouraged not only with the kids that are here in Parkland. I'm just astounded. It's all across the world. I mean, it's unbelievable.

BARBARA PARKER: I'm just proud. I'm proud of them like they were my own kids. It's just -- wonderful.

CAMEROTA: Well, Barbara and Andy, thank you so much.

ANDY PARKER: Thank you, and before -- it's different spelling that --

CAMEROTA: Oh, my gosh. It says, "Allison forever." forever. Obviously, your daughter was Allison Parker. My father's name was Andy. And so I've always felt a special kinship with you guys.

Thank you very much.

(CROSSTALK)

[13:30:13] ANDY PARKER: First time meeting face-to-face.

CAMEROTA: Thank you.

PARKER: Thank you.

CAMEROTA: Thank you so much.

All right, so we will be getting back to all the speakers on the stage. So many students have taken to the stage from Marjory Stoneman Douglas as well as musicians. We'll have much more of the March for Our Lives when we come right back.

Many students expressed their frustration.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

[13:35:00] CHRISTOPHER UNDERWOOD, STUDENT: What we sometimes forget is he himself was a victim of gun violence.

(CHEERING)

UNDERWOOD: I would like to finish my speech by honoring Martin Luther King Jr by remembering his words, which are as true today as when he was alive. Martin Luther King Jr once said, "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about the things that matter, and our lives matter."

Thank you.

(CHEERING)

CAMEROTA: That was 11-year-old boy named Christopher Underwood, an elementary school student here in New York. And his brother was shot and killed by gun violence on his 15th birthday.

This is Jacqueline Corlin who has taken the podium. She's from Stoneman Douglas.

JACQUELINE CORLIN, STUDENT: -- is the heart of this movement. Just as a heart needs blood to pump, my hometown needs the alliance of other communities to properly spread this message.

We openly recognize that we are privileged individuals and would not have received as much attention if it weren't for the affluence of our city.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: Because of that, however, we share the stage today and forever with those who have always stared down the barrel of a gun.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: This issue is undoubtedly an epidemic that effects communities of all classes and epidemic that the Centers for Disease Control does not have the funds to research. This disease continues to spread. Even though we have discovered the cure. But our government officials close their ears because it involves change. A change that does not align with their own agenda.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: That is why Parkland cannot and will not do this alone. There is strength in numbers. We need each and every one of you to keep screaming at your own congressmen. Don't be scared just because they have "Senator" in front of their name.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: Our elected officials have seen American after American drop from a bullet. And instead of waking up to protect us, they have been hitting the snooze button. But we're here to shake them awake.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: Each congressman has a local office in their district. They'll be home for the next two weeks for congressional recess.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: Have them hear you out. Because they work for us!

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: And if they still won't meet with you, remind them that you invited their opponent. Because we all know they'll show up then.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: We cannot keep America great if we cannot keep America safe.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: And 96 deaths by fires arm every day is not what I would call great!

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: Our First Amendment right is our weapon of war in this. A weapon that should be on our streets. A weapon that cannot kill but can heal. (CHEERING)

CORLIN:

Love will always outweigh the hate. As the universe is on the side of justice.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: So I need each and every one of you, no matter your age, to continue to fight alongside us. Because hearts cannot pump without blood. And I don't want your community to join the ghastly inner circle that mine is now a part of.

(CHEERING)

CORLIN: In the end, we are all fighting for our lives. But we are a great generation and we'll be the ones to make America safe.

Thank you. (CHEERING)

CORLIN:

I actually have a special guest for you guys so I'm going to come bring her up.

(CHEERING)

(APPLAUSE)

YOLANDA RENE KING, GRANDDAUGHTER OF MARTIN LUTHER KING JR: My name is Yolanda Rene King, granddaughter of Martin Luther King and Coretta Scott King. (CHEERING)

[13:40:07] KING: My grandfather had a dream that his four little children would not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

(CHEERING)

KING: I have a dream that enough is enough!

(CHEERING)

KING: And that this should be a gun-free room, period.

(CHEERING)

KING: Will you please repeat these words after me?

Spread the word!

(SHOUTING)

KING: Have you heard!

(SHOUTING)

KING: All across the nation!

(SHOUTING)

KING: We.

(SHOUTING)

KING: Are going to be!

(SHOUTING)

KING: A great generation!

(SHOUTING)

KING: I'd like you to say it like you really, really mean it!

(CHEERING)

KING: Spread the word!

(SHOUTING)

KING: Have you heard!

(SHOUTING)

KING: All across the nation!

(SHOUTING)

KING: We!

(SHOUTING)

KING: Are going to be!

(SHOUTING)

KING: A great generation!

(SHOUTING)

KING: I'd like you to say it like you really, really mean it and the whole entire world can hear you!

Spread the word!

(SHOUTING)

KING: Have you heard!

(SHOUTING)

KING: All across the nation!

(SHOUTING)

KING: We!

(SHOUTING)

KING: Are going to be!

(SHOUTING)

KING: A great generation!

(SHOUTING)

KING: Now give yourselves a hand!

(CHEERING)

(APPLAUSE)

(CHEERING)

(CHANTING)

(CHEERING)

(SINGING)

MILEY CYRUS, SINGER: Sing along everybody!

(SINGING)

CYRUS: You know the words.

(SINGING)

CYRUS: Sing along.

(SINGING)

(CHEERING)

[13:45:53] CYRUS: Thank you so much, everybody. Thank you for being here. I love you all so much.

(CHEERING)

CYRUS: Never again. You guys are so incredible. I just find myself lucky to be in the presence of you, wonderful people fighting for what is right.

Love you all so much. Thank you.

(CHEERING)

(MUSIC)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: (INAUDIBLE)

CAMEROTA: OK, you've been listening to Miley Cyrus. She obviously brought down the house with the song, "The Climb." The message that there's always going to be another uphill battle.

Before that, you heard from Martin Luther King Jr's granddaughter who just gave a really adorable talk to the -- an unexpected talk. She wasn't on our list of guests. And she said, "I have a dream too, enough is enough." That was also a really special moment here.

We want to bring in now CNN's Sunlen Serfaty. She is out there in the crowd.

Sunlen, what has been the response?

SUNLEN SERFATY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: There's been quite a response. And to give you an idea of where we are situated from about where you are, we're about ten blocks away. I want to show you this scene down Pennsylvania Avenue. As you can see from the crowd, people are shoulder to shoulder. Really packed right in like sardines.

And I can tell you during these speeches, these incredibly inspiring speeches by these students, by these young people, the crowd here is silent. They're here not only to let their voices be heard but also to listen. You can hear a pin drop while these speeches are going on. They certainly are here to not only let their messages be heard but also listen and learn from these incredibly inspiring students -- Alisyn? CAMEROTA: Sunlen, you're so right. Before this started, the

estimates were there would be half a million people. We don't have new estimates from the park police yet, but it sure looks like they got every one of the people that they were expecting. So many teenagers here. I mean, teenagers have just taken over.

Here is Ryan Deitsch, a Stoneman Douglas student. You may recognize him. One of the most outspoken. Here he is.

RYAN DEITSCH, STUDENT: Movie stars in the crowd. We might have videos on these streams, but this is not the Oscars.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: And I don't know if you've been looking, but I don't see any Macy's balloons out there. This is real life. This is reality. This is what's happening in our country and around the world today.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: I'd like to make it real for a minute. February 14th is my sister's birthday. She had to spend that birthday huddled under a desk holding Lauren Hogg's, David's sister, her hand. Hoping that she was going to make it home that day. She was premature. She didn't know if she was going to make it at the beginning of her life and she didn't know if she was going to make it home that day, this year. She might not have stared down the shooter's eyes. She might not have even seen him or known who he was, but he affected her life just as much as everybody else who has spoken on this day today.

And I know a lot of people, a lot of people are out there saying that we need to make America safe again. And I know that we can't. We cannot make America safe again until we arm our teachers. We need to arm our teachers. We need to arm them with pencils, pens, paper, and the money they need!

(CHEERING)

[13:50:02] DEITSCH: They need that money to support their families and to support themselves before they can support the futures and those classrooms! To support the future that sits on that desk waiting to learn.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: And we need to arm our students, too. We need to arm them with the facts and the knowledge and the education they need to live in the real world, not just some fantasy! Not just something painted out there by the public, by the media. We need them to be armed. And there is one way to do that. This, this right here, this right here connects you to the whole of human nature and you can click it with anything that we have all learned to our journey to this stage right here today. You can learn it just like that. You can go to the Web site and type it in, and it is there. I have been amazed by what I have seen.

I'm amazed that I cannot see the end of the crowd here in D.C. today.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: I have been amazed by all of the walkouts that have been taking place over the past five weeks.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: And these walkouts have been criticized. They have been told that it is a disruption to the educational process. And I say to them, the real disruption to the educational process is staring down the barrel of a gun.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: It is a fact that you can be taking a calculus exam and then when you are doing that, you in the back of your head, where is the shooter is going to enter. When does he come? Where can I hide? We are done hiding.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: We are done being afraid.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: And we are done being full of fear, because it is a waste of our time. It is not living out what the forefathers envisioned, life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: And now I know that we ma march today, but this is not over. This is the beginning of the end, and from here we fight. It is time to fight for our lives.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: And I'd say that there is only one way to do that, and we need to rev up society. We need to rev up the engines and rev up America. And we do that through registering to vote.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: We need to do that through every single walkout. And we will be making sure that you can register to vote and preregister to vote. Then, we will educate. We will be going around the country until these elections and therefore thereafter until we can tell every man, woman, and child in the country, what is real, and what is going on. And we need to make sure that everyone knows what is actually happening in their backyard and abroad.

(CHEERING)

DEITSCH: So we will register, and we will educate and when it comes down to it, we will vote. (CHEERING)

DEITSCH: They might preach NRA and they might preach G-U-N, but we are preaching R-E-V, register, educate, vote.

Thank you, and hello, Uncle Myron (ph).

(CHEERING)

ALLAYA EASTMAN, STUDENT: Hi. My name is Allaya Eastman, and I'm a Parkland survivor.

(CHEERING)

EASTMAN: I was in room 1214 studying Holocaust history when the bullets were flying in and I was the third classroom. Today, one of my fellow fallen eagles, named Nicolas Doran, it would have been his 18th birthday today. I dedicate my march to him.

(CHEERING)

EASTMAN: But I'm not only here to speak about school shootings. I'm here to speak for the urban communities that have been speaking out about this way before February 14th, 2018.

(CHEERING)

EASTMAN: Their voices are just as I important as ours, and they need to be heard.

This is a very important subject, and it is -- I needs to change. Although it has been 38 days since the Parkland shooting, nothing has changed, and we need change now.

(CHEERING)

EASTMAN: This cannot happen again. And it is going to continue to happen again until we get change.

How many more do we need? How many more do we need in schools? How many more in the streets? We need change now. Not only in the schools, but in urban communities as well.

(CHEERING)

[13:55:08] EASTMAN: All of our lives are important. And all of our stories need to be heard. No matter what color you are, what school you go to, what neighborhood you live in.

(CHEERING)

EASTMAN: Fifteen years ago, I lost my Uncle Patrick to gun violence in Brooklyn, New York. My mother almost lost her daughter to the same gun violence in Parkland, Florida. This needs to change. We have been fighting for this way too long, and nothing has changed. And we need change now. (CHEERING)

EASTMAN: Yes, I am a Parkland survivor and MSD student, but before this, I was a regular black girl, and after this, I am still black, and I am still regular, and I will fight for all of us.

(CHEERING)

(CHEERING)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: Hello, beautiful people of America.

(CHEERING)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: It is a great day to be here and it is a great day to see all of you here and I am proud of each and every one of you.

And the truth is I am not here for me. I am here for you. So, you don't have to ever fear of getting shot in your own classroom. You don't have to ever wonder if you to see your best friend die next to you. You don't have to worry about going into the Holocaust history class to learn about death and experience it right before your eyes.

And this is why -- this is why -- oh, my god, I am shaking. And this is why this piece is called enough.

(CHEERING)

(CHEERING)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: Never did I think they would be herded like cattle by bullets that left me scarred and rattled and forced to huddle among those who lost their last living breaths on a day designated for hugs and laughs. I never got to say good-bye. I could barely see out of my eyes, because I was crying tears and blood at the same time barricaded behind those filing cabinets and bookcases. That day taught me one thing and one thing only, regardless of how much money you pay or how much you pray, if you don't change anything today, your children will no longer stay. So when do we say enough is enough?

(CHEERING)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: Day in, day out, our kids are getting shot up, and the moment we speak up, we are scolded that we are not old enough. It is as if we need permission to ask our friends not to die.

Lawmakers and politicians will scream guns are not the issue. But can't look me in the eye.

(SHOUTING)

CHEERING)

(SHOUTING) (CHEERING)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: I just threw up on international television, and it feels great.

(CHEERING)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: We are not asking for a ban. We're asking for compromise. Forget your size and colors, let's save one another. Use efficient regulation that doesn't make any exception. Close the cracks and loopholes with thorough background checks and psychological evaluations. Protect our schools like we do our other government establishments. Use security protocol methods that are efficient.

And one more request: Listen.

(CHEERING)

UNIDENTIFIED STUDENT: Our mission is simple, and our visions are unbeatable. Let's keep the guns out of the hands of the wrong people and keep them in the hands of the safe and the reasonable. So either, either you can join us or be on the side of history or who prioritized their --