Students gathered on Selma Avenue at the beginning of third hour “to protest the lack of gun control measures at the local, state and federal levels,” as written in a graphic advertising the protest.
One month earlier on Feb. 14, 17 Stoneman Douglas High School students and faculty were fatally shot by a 19-year-old with an AR-15, according to the police.
Students met outside at 10 a.m. holding signs that said, “NRA the blood is on your hands,” “We’re coming for congress,” “This student votes,” “We’re not going anywhere,” “Protect children, not guns,” “Enough,” “We are tired of being ignored,” “R.I.P I died by a gun in a ‘safe’ place,” “Because I can buy a gun @ 18 but not a juul” and “Why are women’s bodies more regulated than guns?”
Seniors Sydney Cimarolli and Elliot Williams spoke about their demands of the government, and junior Rosa Parks read a slam poem that she wrote for the protest.
The students had a “die in” for six minutes, the amount of time that MSD shooting lasted. The students returned to class at 10:18 a.m.
WGHS protest was coordinated with other protests as a part of the #Enough National School Walkout organized by Women’s March Youth Empower. According to Women’s March, there were over 2,500 planned student walkouts.
Students who walked out will be counted as cutting class, but it can “become an excused absence if they write a statement or provide a verbal one on why they chose to protest and what they learned from it,” Superintendent John Simpson said via an email to all students.
The protest was organized by Cimarolli and Williams, advertising it via a GroupMe and provided an image to be shared among interested students. Also, a piece of paper titled, “WGHS School Walkout” was spread around the school.
The administration asked the teachers not to “encourage or discourage” the protest.
The Hixon activities fair that was originally planned for today was cancelled due to the potential protests.
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