Students of the University of Wisconsin-Madison will be walking out of classes and gathering at Library Mall and marching to the state Capitol building to join the national school walkout and to bring attention to the gun violence in the United States on Wednesday, March 14.
“We will march down State Street to the Capitol building where we will join other walkout participants from Madison-area high schools,” says Victoria Barrett, one of the students organizing the walkout. “Students will be giving speeches rooted in personal experience with gun violence and based on their ideological conviction that young people should be safe from mass shootings. We have piqued the want for action in our campus community by engaging hundreds through social media in order to build attendance for this action.”
According to EMPOWER, the youth branch of the Women’s March who is organizing the action nationwide, students and teachers across the United States will walk out of their schools and universities to honor the lives of the 17 people killed at Stoneman Douglas and press lawmakers to pass stricter gun control laws.
Among their demands, they want Congress to:
-Ban assault weapons
-Require universal background checks before gun sales
-Pass a gun violence restraining order law that would allow courts to disarm people who display warning signs of violent behavior
“Young people are taking this action because we are no longer willing to live in a world opposed to posterity,” Barrett says. “Our government has prioritized money over the stability of our future for too long. Young people are protecting ourselves from the negligence of our government. We are going to overcome barriers together. We’re prepared to do anything to mitigate the issues we see ahead of us.
“We understand that our future is our choice, and we ask that you join us as we take our power back and ensure this will never happen again,” she added.
More than 2,500 walkouts across the United States are planned for Wednesday.