National School Walkout Rallies Southern Lehigh Students Against Gun Violence


Aisha Durrani

During the walkout, students could sign petitions to local lawmakers asking for action against gun violence.

At 10:00 am on March 14, the students of Southern Lehigh High School walked out of school for the second year in a row. This display of political activism came after some concerned seniors approached principal Mrs. Guarriello with the idea to hold a walkout in order to promote political action related to gun laws.

This walkout occurred on the same day and time as the National School Walkout event that happened last year in remembrance of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. Students from all grade levels participate, but the walk out was not mandatory.

“Gun violence is still a problem. It’s not like it’s gotten better since last year. There’s still mass shootings…so [the march] had to be done again,” said Junior State of America (JSA) Club co-president and senior Hannah Grim.

National School Walkout was organized across the nation to remember the lives of the 17 students shot and killed at a school shooting that occurred on February 14, 2018. The march was used to advocate for gun laws on both sides of political aisle.

The march lasted for 17 minutes: one minute for each student killed. The students decided to organize the march again so that the victims of the shooting would not be forgotten.

“ I wanted to sign the papers for the congressmen to possibly make a change to gun laws,” senior Natalie Kroboth said. “I think [the walkout] was necessary…for people to sign the petitions to try and make a difference

At this year’s march, there was a banner for students to sign. The quote “Be the change you wish to see in the world” from human rights activist Mahatma Gandhi was written on the banner, along with the question “What change would you like to see in the world?”

JSA had a booth to sign up senior students to vote in the upcoming elections. There were several petitions to Center Valley’s political representatives for students to sign. The petitions asked for politicians to take bipartisan action on gun laws.

“It’s important for everyone to know that people can influence politics in their community, and they have to take stances on pressing issues like these,” student organizer and senior Alex Becker said.