March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

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March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby
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By Robert Bernstein

Thousands gathered yesterday in De La Guerra Plaza for March for Our Lives. This was just one of hundreds of such rallies and marches across the US. Here are some of my photos.

This Movement began with the February 14, 2018, mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. Seventeen people were killed and seventeen more were wounded, making it one of the world's deadliest school massacres.

The rally included speakers who directly affected by recent shootings. One was a close friend of a victim of the Las Vegas mass shooting.

We have seen one mass shooting after another pass with little or no meaningful action by our elected officials. All that is offered are "thoughts and prayers". And a claim that it is "too soon" to talk about guns and gun control.

But this time is different. This time the young people have decided the grown ups are not doing their job. It is time to take charge. And they are doing so in a big way. They have organized marches and rallies. They have appeared on a range of television programs from "60 Minutes" to Bill Maher's "Real Time". They have met with government officials at all levels.

They have made it clear this movement will not end until students can go to school and focus on their education, not on their safety. Or lack of safety.

They have also made it clear this is not about politics as usual. They want sweeping policy changes that will end the tyranny of the NRA (National Rifle Association).


The NRA was once an organization of hunters and sport shooters who wanted to advocate for gun safety. In recent decades it has transformed into a lobbying arm of the gun manufacturing industry. Most NRA members are unaware of this change.

This gun manufacturers lobby has twisted the meaning of the Second Amendment in any way possible to promote increased sales of guns. As a side note, we have very few clues of what the Founders intended with the Second Amendment.

One current theory is that the "well organized militias" were actually Southern slave patrols. Poor white men in the South were forcibly conscripted into these patrols. Their job was to track down, capture and return slaves who escaped from wealthy plantation owners. We know that other parts of the Constitution were written to appease slave holding states.

One thing we do know is that the Founders never once mentioned these issues in regard to the Second Amendment:

1) Use of guns to protect personal safety or personal property
2) Use of guns to overthrow a possible future US government that had become tyrannical

This woman offers one helpful suggestion:

Treat guns like cars. A person must show they are competent. And the person must show they are insured. A person who is not mentally or physically fit cannot obtain insurance. And if someone is injured or killed there is compensation.

Young people were joined by teachers who want to focus on teaching, not becoming armed guards.

State Senator Hannah-Beth Jackson gave a fiery speech at the end of the De la Guerra Plaza rally. She told the students to ignore claims that they were too young to understand the issues. They understand the issues perfectly. They need to get involved politically. She introduced and passed a law that allows students to pre-register to vote at age 16 so that they will be registered at age 18. She urged everyone to take advantage of this opportunity.


She emphasized the wisdom of the students who have focused on the fact that the tyranny of the NRA is the problem. That too many elected officials are bought and paid for by the NRA. The deeper root issue is the system of legalized bribery that was endorsed by the Supreme Court in the Citizens United case and other related cases. That money is speech and that corporations are people.

Here is my video of Hannah-Beth Jackson's complete speech.

After that rousing speech, the young organizers urged everyone into the streets for a massive march up State Street. The crowd was overwhelming, rivaling the biggest marches ever in Santa Barbara.

Here is my video of the march where you can read some of the signs.

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Factotum Mar 26, 2018 12:38 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Why has no one started the Constitutional Amendment process. That is how you "modernize" the 2nd Amendment. Read the US Constitution - the rules are set out. The US Constitution is a living document. Part of its enduring brilliance.

CivilEngineer Mar 26, 2018 11:42 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

I thought it was a great event with mostly inspiring speeches. My favorite sign was one that said- "Then REGULATE!" Maybe these kids who can't vote can get us to save them from being killed by military weapons in schools and at Country Music concerts. The arguments in favor of being able to buy military weapons and ammunition are not well-founded, to me.

Factotum Mar 26, 2018 10:53 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

This was a Democrat Party rally. Plain and simple. Only they continue to preach about "killing" inconsistently and with outright lies.

Ahlia Mar 26, 2018 09:48 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

SO inspiring to see the youth of America standing up & speaking out so bravely ! ... Automatic weapons are weapons of WAR and they do not belong on our streets or in our homes and schools. End the tyranny of the NRA and vote out all of our lame duck legislators !

Factotum Mar 26, 2018 12:30 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Aren't you curious why the powers that be ignored 39 warning signs where they could have acted under the current regulations? Go after them if you want action. Then go after the crooks who are not NRA members. Otherwise it appears you are only fronting some other agenda.

SBWalkers Mar 26, 2018 08:08 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

The argument of gun rights is very emotional on both sides. But, what is wrong with fundamental rules for gun ownership and possession? - Background checks (if you have a 'history'..) - Emotional profiling (not for getting a permit, but being prohibited once established) - Gun safety education (not a full course, but basic understanding and safety class) - Clear limit on the power/purpose of the weapon (clip size and firing speed... etc) - Age limit of 21 What is wrong with basic logical responsible requirements? --- KISS!!! quit making this complicated Also, quit detracting the gun ownership with other issues... keep your biblical interpretations out of this discussion of a real problem. Our children (Grammar and High School) are showing more reasonable reactions than the NRA and gun lobbyists. I mean, com'on folks we are talking common sense.

Davy Brown Mar 26, 2018 08:14 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Try reading Bernstein's article again, he never states "White supremacy is the root of the problem." He does note that those "well-organized militias" mentioned in Second Amendment were actually a dog whistle in 1791 to authorize Southern slave patrols. Certainly white supremacy and male hegemonic impulses are all bound up with gun worship like we have here.

Howard Roark Mar 25, 2018 09:42 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Bernstein, you're way off topic, and out of line to throw such hateful lies into the conversation. You can't articulate a point so throw in fake theories to insult all gun owners, the Founding Fathers, all Southerners, and you played the race card. Thanks for exposing what's being passed around the radical indoctrination camps.

MissBleu Mar 25, 2018 06:13 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

My question as a non gun owner is where is the concern about the ongoing social media violence to teens via teens? The gun outrage seems to be masking the cruelty that is so rampant and possibly the cause of such acting out that can quickly be replaced via other means ...I suggest we have a deeper problem here.

oceandrew Mar 26, 2018 08:54 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

FACTOTUM.... what? you must be a video gamer defending the right to virtually kill as many "bad guys" as innocents for hours of non stop entertainment.

Factotum Mar 25, 2018 09:12 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Hollywood is the source of most gun violence imagery. Fiction compared to fact except for one small detail - in real life the bullets kill, even though they are a lot fewer than what Hollywood dishes out relentlessly.

Davy Brown Mar 25, 2018 04:44 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Great report and thank you. Wish you'd mentioned SBCC student Krystle Farmer's courageous speech wherein she asserted "White supremacy is the root of the problem." The gun violence perpetrated on blacks and browns in our society is extremely bad and relates to school mass shootings as well. The anglo and latino crowd reacted well to her charges, even the two stolid Trump guys standing next to me in their MAGA hats.

Flicka Mar 25, 2018 04:29 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Where the killers at schools, concerts and churches part of a "well armed militia" using muskets? And, "alcohol is more dangerous than guns"? You have to be kidding! One bullet and life is gone forever.

SBWalkers Mar 26, 2018 11:04 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Nice, another diversion - what does booze have to do with proper use and understanding of a gun? Next you'll be saying his shoes were too tight and made him angry. Com'on, get real and quit diverting the topic. You still have not answered the questions about responsible gun ownership and why asking for reasonable rules is soooooooo unacceptable. Jeezers man, we do it with cars and motorcycles and even bicycles.... we're talking about lethal weapons here!!

SBWalkers Mar 26, 2018 11:05 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Nice, another diversion - what does booze have to do with proper use and understanding of a gun? Next you'll be saying his shoes were too tight and made him angry. Com'on, get real and quit diverting the topic. You still have not answered the questions about responsible gun ownership and why asking for reasonable rules is soooooooo unacceptable. Jeezers man, we do it with cars and motorcycles and even bicycles.... we're talking about lethal weapons here!!

macpuzl Mar 26, 2018 08:09 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

You know, your constant attempts to misdirect the topic to alcohol are beginning to infringe upon the unofficial NRA motto of God, Guns, and Beer Guts.

mattyboy Mar 26, 2018 06:11 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

I try to stay on topic, but since no one can argue the point due to blind ignorance/fear of guns, I'll try something that maybe affects you, such as alcohol use and your hypocritical blind eye to the even bigger killer you like to ignore.

mattyboy Mar 26, 2018 06:11 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

I try to stay on topic, but since no one can argue the point due to blind ignorance/fear of guns, I'll try something that maybe affects you, such as alcohol use and your hypocritical blind eye to the even bigger killer you like to ignore.

macpuzl Mar 25, 2018 09:19 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

It's not an either/or thing (alcohol or guns). Can't you stay on topic? Although I can see that trying to defend the indefensible would make you feel like changing the topic, it might be more prudent to just not dig your hole any deeper.

mattyboy Mar 25, 2018 07:08 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

"The right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed; a well armed and well regulated militia being the best security of a free country: but no person religiously scrupulous of bearing arms shall be compelled to render military service in person." - Madison's original proposal, in case you were confused by the ratified text, as the original intention is quite clear. Also, if you're going to pull the old this-isn't-the-wild-west-anymore routine, then surely you are in favor of a border wall, considering times have changed and this-isn't-the-wild-west-anymore.

420722 Mar 25, 2018 04:15 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

What a good turnout.. I can’t wait to see what the young kids will do when they grow up in 10 years. They’ve been watching us fail them miserably and I know they are going to change things!!

EastBeach Mar 25, 2018 02:01 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

"We should change the name of AR-15's to 'Marco Rubio' because they are so easy to buy" ..... my favorite quote from Sarah Chadwick, one of the Parkland survivors.

EastBeach Mar 27, 2018 12:24 AM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

There are many states where it is easy, nay incredibly easy, to purchase an AR-15 including Florida where the Parkland shooting occurred. And in over 30 states, there are zero checks if you purchase from a "private seller". You only need to use the Internet for short time to find out.

Factotum Mar 25, 2018 09:15 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

AR-15's are not easy to buy; but they are just as easy to steal as any other weapon or weaponized common article like a car or kitchen knife.

mattyboy Mar 25, 2018 01:56 PM
March for Our Lives Against the Gun Lobby

Also by the numbers, per capita, gun violence is down. Annually, alcohol related deaths are nearly 3x that of guns, but god forbid you give up your alcohol. I also bet you alcohol is more detrimental to kids' lives than guns.

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