March for Our Lifes

 On March 24th, students, parents, and concerned citizens around the country came together to march for gun reform. This of course is coming after the most recent school mass-shooting which ended with 17 dead in Parkland Florida. The slogan of this most recent campaign against guns is “Never Again” meaning never will we let this happen to our country’s students and never will we stop fighting for gun legislation. I traveled to Charlottesville where I found hundreds of people gathered, chanting at the Ntelos pavilion. Orange was the color for the day representing what hunters wear to keep from being shot; from toddlers to 90 year olds, it was a sea of orange. The gathering started with guest speakers such as pastors and professors speaking to the crowd about the importance of gun legislation and how to fight the fight. The crowd marched up and down “The Mall” chanting chants such as “Hey! Hey! Ho! Ho! The NRA has got to go” repeatedly, their voices filled the streets. I noticed many unique signs carried by the protesters, some inspirational messages for the young people of the country, some were  memorial signs for those who have lost their lives due to shootings, and then there was the eerie signs held by small children that read their names with the instruction to remember them if they are killed at school. One sign that stuck out to me was being held by an older woman that read “I send my child to school with a lunch bag; don’t send them back in a body bag” I asked this woman her story and she told she has had four children go through public school in local Albemarle county, she was here to represent the voice of children all over the country who deserve a safe learning environment without the fear of school shooting. As my time in public school comes to a close I feel a sense of pride with my fellow Leemen for standing up against people who tend to talk down to us, my favorite Lee High moment so far has been the dozens of students standing together in silence for 17 minutes in the Commons together remembering those our age who lost their lives going to the same type of place we go five days a week. I am hopeful for our future, I am hopeful that through these marches students are given a voice, I am hopeful that lawmakers  will listen to us.

Aspiring Virginian journalist and proud Robert E. Lee and Shenandoah Valley Governors School senior 

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