Left Hand Valley Courier - All Local, All The Time

By Vicky Dorvee
Editorial@lhvc.com 

NHS students walk out to protest gun violence

 

March 14, 2018

Photo by Vicky Dorvee Niwot High School students participated in the nation-wide walk out protest on Wednesday morning. The goal is to get the attention of legislators and demand changes to laws regarding the purchase and ownership of firearms.

Niwot High students flowed out of the school building this morning just before 10 a.m. to join in the countrywide momentum of teens exercising their rights to free speech by asking for stronger gun control legislation. Student hopes were that by emptying classrooms and being heard, they will bring about speedy changes to prevent the growing wave of senseless tragedies in the U.S.

Student organizers Sophia Jones and Lauren McHugh stood with fellow march leaders on the berm at the front of the school. They began the rally with an emotional plea.

“The purpose of this event is to educate others on the silent rage we have experienced every time the news of another school shooting catches us off guard. We are not only angry that the government isn’t taking action, we are scared; scared to go to school, scared to receive an education,” Jones said.

The 17 minute protest was initiated on the national level by Empower, the youth division of the Women’s March organization. Each minute of the protest honored a student or staff member who was killed in the mass shooting at Majory Stoneman Douglas High School one month ago. Students from that Parkland, Florida high school have responded fervently to the horrific incident. Their well-publicized actions have become the tipping point for other young activists to use their voices and insist on new laws governing the sale of guns.

The motto #NeverAgain and #Enough, along with signs expressing the need to feel safe at school, and asking for national gun policy changes were carried by some in the crowd of about 600 students, half the enrollment at NHS. The stream of students, watched over by some parents and school administrators, along with a few noticeable law enforcement officials, walked east along the front of the school and then west along Niwot Road. They regrouped at the school entry as the names of those who were killed in Florida were read aloud to the crowd.

“Now is our time,” Jones said. “It is our time to stand up for what we believe and make a difference. We may be just high school kids or young adults, but we have never been more enraged by the lack of action that the US government has taken. These are our people.”

 

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