Following the Feb. 14 shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., a wave of activism swept the country. There have been multiple rallies, protests and student walkouts calling for stricter gun control laws.
Some have seen the movement as an assault on the Second Amendment.
On May 3, students at Calabasas High School joined a nation-wide walkout to voice support for the Second Amendment. School staff said that at 10 a.m. about 24 students walked out of their classes to gather on the quad.
Principal C.J. Foss said she was happy to see the students exercise their personal rights but that didn’t excuse them from class.
“A student came to me and said she wanted to participate (in the walkout), and I explained to her the same thing I explained to the students that wanted to do the walkout to recognize the Parkland students,” Foss said. “Students are welcome to participate, it’s their civil right, but it’s a truancy when they walk out of class. If there’s work to be made up, they will not be allowed to make it up.”
Foss could not reveal the name of the Calabasas High School student who organized the walkout but said the event was brief and respectful.
“They walked out to the quad and one student gave a speech; it was probably about three minutes,” Foss said. “The walkout lasted until about 10:21. They had a computer set up for kids to register to vote, which we encouraged.”
Foss said a group of students on both sides of the issue held a debate, which she described as “very respectful.”
The national walkout was called “Stand for the Second,” which was organized by Will Riley, an 18-year-old high school student from New Mexico. Riley stated, through his website standforthesecond.com, that he organized the protest because he believes that the security of a free state requires a well-armed populace.
“We have not ignored the huge movement of our peers against these fundamental human rights and liberties, but the American people must know not all of our generation shares in the shortsighted destruction of our Constitution.”
Riley got help from the conservative organization Tea Party Patriots, which shared information about the walkout and how to get involved on its website. It also features a map that shows several hundred schools around the country that took part.