At 12 p.m. ET on Tuesday, high school students from across the country gathered on the lawn of the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C.. There they dropped to the ground for 12 minutes, or 720 seconds, in protest of gun violence.
According to the organizers, the time represents “the approximate number of people who have died in mass shootings” since 49 people were killed in the Pulse Nightclub tragedy.
After the clock struck 12:00 p.m., images of the protest started popping up on social media, showing a striking, statement-making visual of young people laying motionless, side-by-side on the lawn of the Capitol.
According to the event’s GoFundMe page, the National Die-In was organized by Amanda Fugleberg and Frank Kravchuk of Orlando, and Nurah Abdulhaqq of Douglasville, Georgia.
In addition to honoring those killed in the 2016 shooting and the many others since, the National Die-In website says the protest’s aim is to demand government action against gun violence. Parts of the event, which began at 10:30 a.m. in D.C., were also live streamed on Periscope and featured a number of advocate speakers.
Though the main die-in was held in D.C., sister events will be taking place throughout the day in Orlando, Florida; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania; Atlanta, Georgia, and other locations across the nation. A list of official sister events can be found here.
A group of students from the Die-In even gathered to protest in Senator Ted Cruz’s office.
National Die-in Day is the latest in a series of 2018 protests that hope to inspire increased gun control laws. Since the February 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, there have been March For Our Lives events, National School Walkouts, and more.
In May, protestors and student activists from Parkland held a memorable die-in in a Publix supermarket in Florida to address the company’s support of National Rifle Association-endorsed political candidates.
And several Parkland students recently announced that they’ll embark on a summer tour around the country with March for Our Lives to help register young people to vote and continue the fight for gun law reform.
It certainly doesn’t seem like America’s youth is backing down any time soon.