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Sara Roschdi Headshot

I'm Just Lucky There Wasn't a Gun There

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High school senior Freddy Munguia was driving from his girlfriend's home in the Lincoln Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles on Jan. 2013 when several people opened fire on him. Munguia died from multiple gunshot wounds. The crime is believed to be gang related, said LAPD Det. Carrillo to The Huffington Post, but Freddy was not part of a gang, she confirmed. Police are still investigating his murder.

If Freddy's murderer didn't have a gun, my friend Freddy would still be alive. If Freddy had a gun, two people would have died.

Freddy died three weeks after the big shooting in Newtown and all the gun control talks were roaring. At the time, I was very involved with various pro-gun control protests.

I walked into homeroom the day after Freddy died and everyone was crying because our teacher had just made the announcement. He's a person that was going to walk the stage with us. He's a person that was going to go off to college. He's a person with a little brother and a girlfriend that still goes to school here. He's a person who should still be alive.

It's sickening to think about how many kids are dying. I feel like there needs to be background checks and the bootleg market needs to be corrected. There are so many mistaken cases where people just fire guns on themselves, or domestic violence problems -- so many situations that are easily preventable.

I've been at parties where people have to go with guns, and I've been at parties where I've had to leave because I heard a gun go off. I leave because its scary and I don't feel safe anymore.

I was jumped by a crew when I was in Wilson Middle School in Pasadena. They were just a group of girls that didn't really like me. I was leaving PE and then three girls pushed me into a small concrete room, one of those rooms that you can't leave from the inside. They kicked, pushed and scratched me. The banged my head against the wall. Some people were watching it. Others were videotaping.

I didn't press charges because I didn't want to ruin their lives. Besides, I know they have hard lives too. Instead, they just left my school.

I'm just lucky there wasn't a gun there.

It's hard to feel safe when there's a gun around. I don't think I'd feel any more safe if I had a gun in my hand, and I would rather die than kill. I would rather be shot than murder. Why do people laugh at that? I don't think my instinct would be to grab a gun and shoot someone. I don't think that would even prevent a murder. Two guns go off, we're both dead. Now two families are suffering.

Sara Roschdi, 17, is a senior at Alliance Environmental Science and Technology High School in Los Angeles, Calif.