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Protesters call for tighter gun control after deadly school shooting in Tennessee

Protesters call for tighter gun control after deadly school shooting in Tennessee
More than 1,000 parents, students gather at state capitol demanding stricter gun laws

By Darren Lyn

HOUSTON, US (AA) - More than 1,000 parents and students protested Thursday at the state capitol in the US state of Tennessee demanding tighter gun control laws after Monday’s deadly school shooting in Nashville that left three students and three adults dead.

"I felt a duty to be here...to be a voice for the children, to prioritize their safety," said S'Kaila Colbert, the mother of two children, in an interview with CNBC. "I can't even (find) the words. How do you explain that to a 6-year-old? How do you prepare someone who doesn't experience violence to be prepared for fighting for their life in a place that they love to be?"

Police said Audrey Hale, 28, a former student at the Covenant School, entered the building and started firing randomly. Hale was gunned down by officers, but not before taking the lives of the six victims.

Protesters lined the hallways of the capitol with chants of "save our children," hoping to get lawmakers' attention in the state's Republican-dominated legislature as they filed into the building.

Among them was an 11-year-old student, John Hollis Chester, who told WPLN radio station that the current gun laws scared him.

"There's a bunch of bad gun laws," said Chester. "It's sad that we have to do all these drills because we're so used to having these shootings in schools everywhere. So it kind of makes me feel scared and sad."

Janet Maykus, a local church pastor who came to the protest, said she was turned off that Republican leaders would not speak about the school shooting at the legislative session.

"Is anybody going to say anything? Is anybody going to do anything?" Maykus told WPLN. "Or are we just going to keep having weapons of war on the street?"​​​​​​​

Since the 1999 Columbine High School Massacre in Littleton, Colorado, 175 people have died in 15 mass shootings connected to US schools and colleges, according to a database compiled by Northeastern University, USA Today and the Associated Press.

source: News Feed
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