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A Walk Out Planned at Franklin High

Students+at+FHS+are+joining+students+around+the+nation+in+a+walk+out+on+March+14th.
Students at FHS are joining students around the nation in a walk out on March 14th.

Students at FHS are joining students around the nation in a walk out on March 14th.

Students at FHS are joining students around the nation in a walk out on March 14th.

REBEKAH REDWINE, Guest Writer

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On February 14th, 17 lives were taken at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. As a result of the cruel gun violence of the recent years, a National School Walkout will be happening on March 14th, 2018 at 10am. Schools all over the country will be doing this, as a way to honor those who lost their lives and to call on Congress to act upon the violence in our nation. 

Franklin High will be participating in this, but the way we are doing it is a bit different from how many schools across the country are. We are lucky enough that students and teachers will not face consequences, such as suspension, for walking out and standing up for what they believe in. However, many students do not want to walk out and they will be given the chance to go to the gym for the 17 minutes.

There is a lot of debate over this walk out, as many students do not understand what the point of the walkout is or believe that it will not make a difference. We should not have to feel unsafe in our schools, movie theaters, or homes. We call upon Congress to make a change and help end gun violence nationally. This walk out though, is more about school safety. Feeling safe in a learning environment should not be a political issue, as nobody wants to arrive at FHS at 7:15 every morning fearing for their life. This mass movement is to help us end the tragic deaths of students and teachers as a result of gun violence.

Here are a couple of questions that I have heard from other FHS students about the walk out that you may be wondering as well:

Why 17 minutes? How will this make a difference?

There were 17 people killed at the shooting in Parkland, so we will be outside for one minute for each of the lives taken. The 17 minutes is symbolic of our ability to stand up and do what we think is right. This may not make a big difference, but the fact that it has already become a national movement shows that our generation can make a change.

What time will we be going outside and what will we be doing there?

At 9:55 on 3/14, when 2nd period ends, the doors to the main entrance will open and allow students to exit the building to the sidewalk and bus loop. There will be police officers blocking all entrances and exits to the school, ensuring our safety. Once outside, there will be a moment of silence, students speakers, and other things that we have not completely decided yet. Please wear orange on this day as it is the color of gun violence prevention.

Why should I participate in this if it seems like admin is pushing it and seemingly erasing the point of the walk out?

Our administration is being very understanding of everyone’s viewpoints and allowing them to exercise their right to protest. In the Hockomock league, 11/12 of the schools will not be punishing students who decide to participate, as they believe that students and teachers have the right to speak up for what they believe in. They do not want teachers to feel as though that they cannot walk out as well, so that is why students will have the option to go to the gym. If you are truly passionate about the issue and want to remember those who lost their lives in Parkland, we hope that you join us outside.

What else can I do to make a difference?

Pre-register to vote, register to vote, contact your Congressman (Joe Kennedy) and Senators (Elizabeth Warren and Ed Markey). Speak up for what you believe in and maybe attend the March for Our Lives on March 24th in Boston or Washington DC.

Here is some additional information on the event: https://actionnetwork.org/events/franklin-high-walk-out?referrer=rebekah-redwine&source=direct_link

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