This afternoon about 60 activists demonstrated in front of the Myrtle Beach Gun Show urging action on legislation to protect schools and other public places from mass shootings such as occurred in Parkland, FL. The demonstration was organized by the Horry County Democratic Party.
Among those demonstrators were my step granddaughters, Mikaela and Karleigh Campman, both high school students, and their grandmother -- my wife -- Jackie Cristiano.
Mikaela, who turns 18 tomorrow and is headed to college, and Karleigh, 15, were motivated by the #NeverAgain campaign launched by Parkland students whose eloquence and determination appear to be shaking stalwart gun control opponents, even causing some -- including President Trump -- to at least soften their positions.
"It's not right that students, kids, should be afraid to go to school," Mikaela said. "Our schools should be places of safety where we can go to learn and prepare for our futures -- not worry about whether we will actually have a future."
"At our age, we should be preparing for our prom," Karleigh said, "not worry about getting shot." In fact, both Mikaela and Karleigh are heading to the mall this week to purchase prom dresses with the help of Bammaw (Jackie).
Both girls said they plan to continue their protests and to support the #NeverAgain movement. "We can't let this moment pass," said Mikaela.
Bammaw was at the demonstration to support her granddaughters and all kids who need to be safe in their schools, on their playgrounds, in shopping centers, in concerts, in church, and not be afraid some crazed gunman will open fire on them.
"It's time for the politicians to stop playing footsie with the National Rifle Association and stand up for our kids," said Bammaw. "Assault rifles have no place in society. They are weapons of war. Our children are precious. They are our future. The politicians need to understand that. Next, we'll have Bammaws United in America and those suckers will wish they never heard of us."