BOSTON (CBS) – “These young people, I’m just so proud of them, because they are not going to give up,” said Deborah Wornum. After her son, Aaron Wornum, was gunned down in Boston, she traveled to Washington, DC pleading for gun control. “I sat with all the constituents begging them,” she said. “Of course the law never got passed.”
Now she believes a group of teenagers in her neighborhood can help accomplish what she could not. “We might be young, but we know right from wrong,” explained Junelle Matthias, a junior at Codman Academy in Dorchester. “I have a little sister. I don’t want her to go to school and have to deal with these things.”
Living with gun violence is something some Boston teenagers share with the shooting survivors from Florida now making powerful pleas for gun laws. “I’ve lived in Roxbury my whole life,” said Cherish Lamar-Smith. “I’ve seen a lot of violence and death amongst young people.”
She and fellow students joined Wornum and others with Senator Ed Markey at the Mothers for Justice and Equality office in Roxbury Tuesday. Markey reiterated demands to ban assault weapons, and expand background checks as well as federal research on gun violence. “We are at the dawn of a children’s crusade to have common sense gun legislation pass on the floor of the United States Congress,” Markey said.
Wornum is praying he’s right. “They’re our future,” she said. “Those are our doctors and our lawyers and the next president will be those young people, so who better to fight this fight than them.”