PARKLAND, Fla. — March for Our Lives, a youth movement started by students who survived a school shooting that killed 17 people here, plans to fan out across the country this summer in a bus tour to register young people to vote.
The tour is scheduled to start on June 15 in Chicago and has dozens of planned stops over 60 days, and activists plan to register young people to vote in states including California, Connecticut, Iowa, Missouri, South Carolina and Texas. A separate tour is scheduled to make 27 stops in Florida, one in each of the state’s congressional districts.
“We are encouraging people around the country to educate themselves on their vote, to get out there and turn voting into more of an act of patriotism than a chore,” Cameron Kasky, a student at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and founder of March for Our Lives, said at a news conference here Monday morning. “This generation is the generation of students you will be reading about next in the textbooks.”
Organizers said the bus tour will register young people at each stop, talking to them about gun reform and whether local candidates support them or have the support of the National Rifle Association. Kasky pointed out that more than four million people turned 18 this year and are eligible to vote in November’s midterm elections.
The stops on the bus tour are targeted: the group aims to register students in areas of the country where politicians are backed by the NRA, and activists also will travel to communities that have been impacted by gun violence, meeting with survivors and victims.
“This issue affects every community, and we’re all fighting for our lives,” said Ryan Deitsch, a Parkland student. “We need to take our communities back from the NRA, and continue this movement. We’ll make our voices heard, register young people to vote, get them to the polls, and change America’s gun policies so that these senseless tragedies stop.”
The bus drive, called “March for Our Lives: Road to Change,” is the latest iteration of March for Our Lives, which was founded by students shortly after the Feb. 14 shooting at Stoneman Douglas. It has led to a wave of activism; in March, tens of thousands of people across the country gathered to demonstrate gun violence in student-organized marches.
March for Our Lives is working to make voter registration its long-term goal. Shortly after the Parkland shooting, students fanned out to register young people to vote at high schools and colleges nationwide. Groups from…