On March 14th, there was a national school walk-out in response to a recent spike in gun violence. According to a group of anonymous students who participated in the walk-out here at Memorial, our walk out was treated it as more of a break from class than a political stand by many.
Participant A, a junior girl, tried to take a stand and didn’t like how it turned out. She says that “[M]e and my friend Katie stood up to talk about why we were out there. We were saying how we can make a positive change at the school. Then this group of girls started laughing and we asked them to save private conversations for after because it was disrespectful to be laughing. One of them got in my face and started screaming and then we went inside.” It can certainly be said that standing up for what you believe in shouldn’t have a negative effect, but it also shouldn’t be ignored. “Nothing came of it, the teachers didn’t take it seriously and neither did the students. I wish it had been taken more seriously because it was really important.”
Participant B, a freshman girl, agreed with Participant A’s sentiment. “The meaning behind it was lost and arguments broke loose. Instead of mourning the loss of those students, people began to argue over the second amendment.” Although the walk-out didn’t go as planned, this student still has hope. “I think the walk-out was really important to show that us, as students, can make a difference… It made me realize that things like gun laws, are so hard to change. I hope everyone can come together in the future.”
It seems as though disruptive students really drew everyone’s attention, because while Participant C, another junior girl, had a more positive outlook on the day: “Well it was nice,” she also noted that there were “some rude people.” C added that “Mr. A kinda told us to do whatever we want.” Which may have been what inspired the private conversations and the altercation referred to earlier in the article.
Another freshman girl, Participant D, had a majorly dour experience on the day and fear about the themes surrounding it. “Well the government wasn’t doing anything for our safety so we decided to protest… To be honest, I’m not sure our voices were really heard. I don’t believe the government is going to change.” Even though she is “scared the government still won’t do anything to ensure our safety,” she is still glad she partook in the walk-out along with what she estimated to be 30 other students.
Even though the walk-out may not have been taken seriously, or gone as planned. It is important to know that there are students who care about our government. The students of today are the adults of tomorrow so being involved in the government is a must.