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The Florida Teen Survivors Behind #NeverAgain

In the wake of tragedy, a group of teenagers are speaking out about gun control in America.


On February 14, 2018, the lives of students at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School were forever changed when a former student gunned down 17 people. In the immediate aftermath, a small group of teens got in front of the cameras and started demanding a serious conversation about U.S. gun laws. While most of the previous calls for debate in the wake of school shootings have quickly faded from the nation's attention, there are signs that this time it might be different. Here's a look at some of the teenagers who are keeping the gun issue front and center and demanding that something change.

Cameron Kasky RHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images Cameron Kasky On the day of the shooting, Kasky was picking up his special needs brother from class when shots broke out at Stoneman Douglas. Kasky went home that night grateful to be alive, but also angry. Twenty-four hours later, Kasky was putting his anger to work, inviting a few friends over to lay the groundwork for a movement. “Working on a central space that isn’t just my personal page for all of us to come together and change this," he posted on Facebook. "Stay alert. #NeverAgain.” (Pictured: Cameron Kasky speaks at a gun control rally in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on February 17, 2018.) Emma Gonzalez RHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images Emma Gonzalez Just three days after the massacre, students gathered at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale to demand stricter gun legislation. Among the many student voices at the rally was Gonzalez, a senior at Stoneman Douglas who drew national attention with her tearful speech. "They say that no laws could have been able to prevent the hundreds of senseless tragedies that have occurred — we call B.S.! That us kids don’t know what we’re talking about, that we’re too young to understand how the government works — we call B.S.!” (Pictured: Emma Gonzalez wipes away tears during a CNN town hall meeting on February 21, 2018.) David Hogg Mark Wilson/Getty Images David Hogg Student journalist Hogg went into action during the shooting, documenting the terror and interviewing students close to him. Hogg became one of the first students to speak out for gun reform, famously stating in an interview with CNN, “Please! We are children. You guys are, like, the adults. Take action, work together, come over your politics, and get something done.” Alfonso Calderon Joe Raedle/Getty Images Alfonso Calderon A co-founder of the #NeverAgain movement, Alfonso Calderon knew the accused shooter, Nikolas Cruz, and felt compelled to take action following the tragedy, telling the New Yorker, “We have to vote people out who have been paid for by the N.R.A.. They’re allowing this to happen. They’re making it easier for people like Nick Cruz to acquire an AR 15.” (Pictured: Alfonso Calderon speaks with Broward County Sheriff officer Brad Griesinger as he guards the front gate of Stoneman Douglas on February 18, 2018.) Jaclyn Corin Sun Sentinel/TNS via Getty Images Jaclyn Corin Another #NeverAgain co-founder, Corin led the charge on a trip to Tallahassee where students spoke with Florida legislators about changing state gun laws. “Our coping mechanism is dealing with it in a political aspect," she told local news reporters. "I know that a lot of us in the school have different coping mechanisms, and it’s good that we do because we need a wide variety of comfort and mourning, but also political action.” (Pictured: Jaclyn Corin walks with Florida Sen. Lauren Book as they head to the Capitol Building on February 21, 2018.) Delaney Tarr RHONA WISE/AFP/Getty Images Delaney Tarr 17-year-old Tarr, like many of her fellow classmates, has turned to social media and other online avenues to get politicians and voters to listen. In an op-ed she penned for Teen Vogue, the survivor turned activist stated, "Our childhoods may have been stolen from us but there are so many lives that can still be protected, and saved." (Pictured: Delaney Tarr speaks at a gun control rally in Fort Lauderdale, Florida on February 17, 2018.)