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Portsmouth 'March for Our Lives' Event Draws Huge Crowd

A crowd of several hundred people turned out for the March for Our Lives event in Portsmouth on Saturday.

The rally featured speeches from students from several high schools in the region, as well as teachers, parents, and elected officials.

Zoe Pavlik is a sophomore at Oyster River High School in Durham. She told the crowd what it’s been like growing up with active shooter drills at school.

“We hide in the corners. We listen to our teachers receive messages from the front office telling them where a make-believe shooter is in our school. Part of our education is learning how to be victims. We should not be learning how to be victims.”

Sophie Blanchard, a senior at York High School in York, Maine, said students shouldn’t have to fear getting shot at school.

“So when a government official says that we’re too young, we’re too immature, and we’re too uneducated to have a voice, it doesn’t bring us down, it fires us up!”

The students called for stricter gun laws including universal background checks and a ban on assault-style weapons.

The event coincided with the March for Our Lives event in Washington D.C., which was led by survivors of the Parkland, Florida school shooting.

Jason Moon is a senior reporter and producer on the Document team. He has created longform narrative podcast series on topics ranging from unsolved murders, to presidential elections, to secret lists of police officers.

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