Students across the country walked out of class today to mark the anniversary of the Columbine shooting and the need for common-sense gun control. Many wore orange, as initiated by survivors of the Parkland shooting, because hunters wear orange to avoid being accidentally shot. At some schools, only one or two students participated in the walkout. At one school, possibly a private school due to the uniforms worn by students in the picture, seniors were told they would be excluded from their graduation ceremony if they walked out. At another school, students staged a sit-in or “die-in” and some were arrested. I believe that all these punishments are wrong. I won’t comment on my suspicions as to why some schools punish student non-violent protest and some don’t. I will say that arresting high school students for quiet, non-violent protest is wrong, and that we as citizens should not tolerate it. We adults have a responsible to stand up for these kids and young adults.
Two students from different schools, one seven and one ten, were the only ones to participate in the walkout.
I know that people are saying the young kids who walked out of school alone and gave statements about why they did it were coached by their parents, but when I was seven or eight, I was reading Rachel Carson and watching the news with my grandfather. It’s a mistake to dismiss these kids.
But I don’t think that they’re ever going to allow us to dismiss them. Big change is on the horizon.