Boise Highlights

“A March for Our Lives”

Student Marches from Boise to DC Expected to Draw Large Crowds

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Student walkouts are expected to happen in many cities around the country on March 14th.

Student walkouts are expected to happen in many cities around the country on March 14th.

Photo Credit: People for Unity

Photo Credit: People for Unity

Student walkouts are expected to happen in many cities around the country on March 14th.

Sofi Serio, Managing Editor

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In this country, if you want people to listen, you march on Washington. MLK did it back in 1963 with 250,000 other people for jobs and freedom. The LGBT community did it back in 1979 to protest anti-LGBT laws and discriminatory policies. Women and men in masses of more than 470,000 did it in 2017 to protest Donald Trump’s inauguration and advocate for women’s rights in the first annual Women’s March on Washington.

And this year, on March 24th, students-turned activists by the horrible events in Parkland, Florida, will march on Washington with an estimated 500,000 other students, parents and teachers to demand Congress take action on gun control.

Not only will a march take place nationally on March 24th, but a local march will occur on March 14th on the steps of the capitol building.

People for Unity, the student-led activism group that organized both the Women’s March and Student Walkout last year, organized this upcoming march planned for March 14th.

The day was chosen as it coincides with other national walkouts around the country that day. March 14th was also chosen as it marks the one month anniversary of when Nicholas Cruz fatally shot 17 students and teachers in Marjory Stoneman-Douglas High School in Florida that tragic day last February.

Although other school walkouts around the country that day will only last for 17 minutes as they honor the 17 victims of the Parkland shooting, the student walkout in Boise is expected to run from about 9:45 when students walk out of classes to 12, when speakers, chants and activities come to a close.

Students wishing to go to the walkout will also have to obtain PTL’s in order for the event to be excused. Students who choose not to obtain PTL’s will face consequences for a truancy.

According to an email sent out by Mr. Thompson regarding the walkout, “The District recognizes the right of students to demonstrate…The start time for the walkout coincides with the beginning of break, but for parents who wish for their students to participate in the planned activities off campus, we will follow our current attendance policy.”

Will Tanguy, a Boise High Senior and an integral part of People for Unity, asserts that the walkout is more than just skipping class and hanging out with friends.

He states, “The walk-out symbolizes the fear our students feel in their schools and that they feel unsafe. We are intending to send a message to our legislatures that something needs to be done about the issue of school shootings that we have had #enough.”

He also adds that standing up for gun rights is crucial, now more than ever.

“Whether you believe that guns are a necessity, or you believe no one should have guns, something needs to change. The man in Parkland, the man from Sandy Hook, or even the teenagers from Columbine should never have been allowed to have guns. The process of obtaining a gun is simply not strict enough to prevent gun violence and to protect the students of America. Until gun reform is implemented, no student in the public school system should consider themselves safe within their school walls.”

While not everyone agrees on the stance the Parkland students are taking on gun control, it’s truly remarkable how they’ve turned tragedy into triumph, from starting the social media movements #Enough and #NeverAgain, which have garnered millions of retweets, shares and posts, to organizing a march on Washington that expects to draw crowds that rival the numbers of the Women’s March.

It’s a powerful thing to see that when the “grown ups” won’t do anything, kids stand up and take a stand on issues that matter most to them. From Washington DC to Parkland, Denver to Boise, students all across the country all throughout the month of March will make people listen to what they have to say.

*Make sure to check out the follow-up article on the actual events of the march online!*

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