On March 14th, high schools across the nation participated in an event in the hopes that their voices would be heard by Congress for a change on gun control to happen. Baldwin Park High School was one of the many schools which held a 17 minute long walk out at 10am. The walk out, which was fully organized by students and with the help of teachers and administrators, was successful and heartwarming.

Held at the BPHS stadium, students who participated flooded the track and began to march for 17 minutes, a minute for every victim of the Parkland, Florida shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Altars of the victims of the shooting were placed around the track with quotes from interviews by their loved ones.

Walking around and looking at the altars placed around the track gave students at BPHS a sad reality of the situation. Junior Luy Fuentes commented on the event and mentioned, “It makes me feel really awful to look at these pictures of the people who had no idea their lives were going to be taken from them that day. It’s real and I feel like everyone who came out today is taking it much more seriously than before.”

Poetry and speeches were recited at the walkout and brought many students to tears. Having their voices heard by staff and students was empowering and served as an example for what our youth is capable of doing and the positive change they can bring about. Poems on racial discrimination and speeches on the shooting as well as the change that is hoped to be seen with gun control were made at the walk out. Senior Brianna Martinez responded to the event and spoke out by saying, “I thought it was nice how they added the poems that were written by students. It gave me a different perspective on the situation and I’m sure others feel the same way.”

Ending the event was a balloon release ceremony for those who passed away and one last lap around the field, and the touching walk out was over. Balloons with the names of each victim written on them were released into the air while a student read out the dreams and plans they had for their futures. The hope for better gun control and safer school environments is one many hope this walkout will influence.


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