Students, parents, and a wide assortment of gun-control advocates young and old marched and rallied in Tallahassee Saturday. The local "March for Our Lives" event was one of more than 800 similar happenings in the United States.
The line of march extended from the Westcott Building courtyard at Florida State University to the steps of the Historic Florida Capitol.
Speakers there included a number of students with a connection to Parkland's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and several political figures, including Tallahassee Mayor Andrew Gillum, Tallahassee State Representative Loranne Ausley and Leon County School Superintendent Rocky Hanna. Also speaking was Farhan "Ronny" Ahmed, the former FSU student left paralyzed during the 2014 shooting at the school's Strozier Library.
Officials at the Florida Capitol estimated the turnout at Saturday's rally to be around 2,500 people. An estimated 4,000 attended the Capitol rally one week after the Valentine's Day shooting in Parkland.
Hundreds of similar events occurred simultaneously in other state, and a number of other countries. The largest took place in Washington, D.C.
The rallies are in support of gun control efforts in the wake of school shootings across the U.S., the most recent in Florida involving the death of 17 people, 14 students and three adults, at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. State lawmakers approved a bill increasing mental health funding, establishing protocols for removing guns from people deemed mentally unfit and increasing the purchase age and wait times. The National Rifle Association is suing over the increased purchase age provisions.