RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) — Young people across North Carolina say they are fed up with gun violence on their streets and in their schools.
“It’s always that thought, ‘when is the next mass shooting going to happen? Am I going to be in the school that it’s in’,” said Nico Gleason, the Executive Diirector for March for Our Lives North Carolina.
It’s that fear and anxiety surrounding gun violence that brought students like Gleason to Halifax Hall in Raleigh Saturday to call for an end to gun violence.
“Every time I’m in a new classroom, I look for what windows could I jump out of, where can I escape, and where is the second door that I could use to leave if there was an active shooter in that building,” Gleason said.
While Gleason wonders if it will happen, students like Jack Seigel know that it can happen.
It did for him, April 30 inside his classroom at the North Carolina University in Charlotte. A gunman opened fire killing two people and wounding four more, including a student from Apex.
“It’s something you think will never happen. It’s scary. It’s bizarre,” said Seigel.
He said his world has changed since that day.
“It gives you a new perspective on these events because we hear about it all the time in the news. You can kind of imagine, but you can’t really put yourself in that situation until you’ve actually been there. And now I am suddenly able to empathize tons of things that I’ve heard happen over the years,” Seigel said.
Saturday he stood with some fellow classmates and other young people who were thinking about the impact of gun violence on their lives.
“The fact that I wasn’t surprised by the tragedy at my school is very, very concerning and it shows the lack of action taken by our politicians,” said Margaret Murphy, the UNCC chapter director of a group called March for our Lives.
It’s elected officials they want to hear their concerns.
“We want a world where people can feel safe and we desire to feel safe in our community,” continued Murphy.
“We’ve just been yelling at each other over the issues. Let’s just come together and solve them,” said Seigel.
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