Thousands Walk-Out of School in Protest for Gun-Control

An estimated 2,600 schools across the country walked out on Friday, April 20th, to protest against school shootings and demand gun control reform. The day marked the 19th anniversary of the Columbine High School Shooting.  

This was the second walkout planned for gun control after the Parkland Shooting on February 14th of this year. The first walkout occurred on March 14th; a month after the Parkland School Shooting.

Ten days later, on Saturday, March 24th, thousands of people marched across the globe in solidarity with the March for Our Lives movement, as Parkland survivors led the march in Washington D.C. In Atlanta alone, an estimated 70,000 people marched approximately two miles from the Center for Human and Civil Rights to Liberty Square.

In attendance at the march were Lambert High School students Sean Toole and Keelin Unger.  

Junior class member Sean Toole described the march, “just seeing so many people together for the same cause, I was like more near the front so I could look back and see how many people there…just uniting under the same cause is just amazing, it’s great the future of our country.”

Keelin Unger talked about why she marched, “My parents both teach. They’ve been teaching for years. And now they have to start learning how to put pressure on gunshot wounds so kids don’t bleed out. And that’s not something they should have to worry about…I just think it’s ridiculous that we have to worry about a place that’s supposed to be safe.”

Before the march began, the crowd consolidated outside the Center for Human and Rights. Speakers included many teens from Georgia, including some from Centennial High School, and survivors from the Parkland school shooting. Two high students led the crowd in songs before the march commenced. The only two adult speakers were civil rights leader John Lewis, and Atlanta mayor, Keisha Lance Bottoms.

The March for Our Lives Atlanta continues to promote the end of gun violence. On April 7th, the organization held a town hall with political representatives and candidates. In addition, they have formed  the Georgia Student Alliance for Social Justice (GSASJ) to promote student activism.