"The people in the government who were voted into power are lying to us. And us kids seem to be the only ones who notice and our parents to call BS. Companies trying to make caricatures of the teenagers these days, saying that all we are self-involved and trend-obsessed and they hush us into submission when our message doesn't reach the ears of the nation, we are prepared to call BS. Politicians who sit in their gilded House and Senate seats funded by the NRA telling us nothing could have been done to prevent this, we call BS. They say tougher guns laws do not decrease gun violence. We call BS.
They say a good guy with a gun stops a bad guy with a gun. We call BS. They say guns are just tools like knives and are as dangerous as cars. We call BS. They say no laws could have prevented the hundreds of senseless tragedies that have occurred. We call BS. That us kids don't know what we're talking about, that we're too young to understand how the government works. We call BS."
-- Emma Gonzalez. Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting survivor.
At 10am yesterday, the students of Granby High School walked out for seventeen minutes in solidarity with High School students all over the country to protest the lack of action on the part of our elected representatives concerning gun control legislation in the wake of seventeen children murdered in a mass shooting. Granby's principal is to be commended for how she worked with her charges to ensure an orderly event, taking care that students felt heard.
The protest was orderly, heartfelt, and well organized. Once completed, students returned to their classes to resume instruction.
The following speech was given on the front steps of Granby by one of the three student leaders who helped organize the event -- Sy "Ari" Faure:
"To the president, the houses, and students and Americans everywhere.
Here it is. Today is our day, our fight. Today we protest our government and president's appalling lack of action as well as their efforts to make us forget yet another massacre to add to our history books. Today we protest the power of the NRA over our government.
Now, allow us to address just a few of the other mass murders our government also did nothing about.
2017, last year 59 people were killed in Las Vegas in a mass shooting, in which security guards had guns, but were unable to use them out of fear of shooting innocent people and creating more fear and panic.
2016, the Orlando nightclub shooting, in which 50 people died.
Now let's narrow it down to school mass shootings.
In 1999, 15 people were killed in the infamous Columbine High School shootings.
2007, the Virginia Tech shooting. 33 people died.
The Sandy Hook elementary school shooting, where 28 children and teachers were shot and killed.
And that's just to name a few.
In our country, after children are murdered in places of learning, where they and their parents are told they should be safe, our government does nothing.
In the UK, in 1996 a 43 year old man killed 16 children and a teacher and then himself with a legally owned handgun. It now has some of the strictest gun control laws in the world. There has only been one mass shooting since.
In Australia, gun ownership is also heavily restricted, after an incident the same year, when a man killed 35 people with a semi automatic rifle. Since then their numbers in mass shootings has dropped.
In Germany, after tightening guns laws due to two school shootings in 2002 and 2009, the number of firearm killings were cut in half.
The president believes that the way to solve this is to add guns, as well as put them in schools. He believes this will deter shooters and that teachers will be able to stop them. Outside of the Parkland high school, was a deputy with a gun during the shooting. He did not go in. At the Las Vegas shooting, there were security guards with guns. They did not use them out of causing more panic and accidentally shooting INNOCENT BYSTANDERS.
If the president of the United States believes, that adding more scared people with weapons in a sea of children getting shot at will save us, then he is a bigger fool than we thought.
In America, after countless children and adults murdered in school and in the streets, we sweep tragedy under the rug. If our country continues in this fashion, we will drown in our own blood."
Photo Series by Adira Hewitt, a student at Granby High.