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School Walkouts

Breanna Zarate

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Over the past two weeks, schools across the nation have been taking part in a protest brought on by the Florida mass shooting that happened at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on Valentines Day that took 17 lives. This tragedy has sparked a nationwide outcry from students who want better gun control. Hundreds of counties surrounding Douglas High School have held walkouts in which students march miles while protesting. The Never Again demonstrations have reached Coast to Coast. Some districts have banned students from protesting, but students are still exercising their freedom of speech.

The walkouts are happening locally to Arizona too. Wednesday, 2/21, Mesa and Gilbert High Schools held demonstrations to show solidarity to the students at Douglas High School. On February 23rd, Hamilton High had a non permitted walkout to protest the relax gun laws. During conference, dozens of students walked out of school and began to march around the perimeter of Hamilton until 11am. Students could be seen holding signs saying “Never Again”. One of the students who attended the walkout, Anna Zumbuhl (11) says, “They were a lot of people there who just wanted to share their voices. It was empowering to be apart of a group like that and for an important reason.” The entire walkout lasted an hour and a half, with students ending their protests a B lunch where they held a 5 minute rally chanting. Cain Ortiz (11) says, “They looked very passionate about what they were saying.” Some of the chants included “HHS will not be next”. Chandler High School also held a demonstration that lasted 17 minutes to mourn the victims lost. Despite Hamilton’s walkout not being excused or permitted, no punishments have been set in place for the students who took part in the walkout. Pilar Anderson (12) says, “I don’t think anyone should get in trouble because they were within their rights.”

More marches and walkouts are planned for the nation’s students. On March 24th, a march on Washington is planned with the slogan March for Our Lives. Women’s March organizers are calling for a 17 minute walkout nationwide on March 14th.

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School Walkouts