NDB community participates in national walkout

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Caroline McCoy
Students hold signs showing their support for gun control.

Students, faculty, and other community members from NDB, along with students across the nation, participated in the March 14 walkout. Participants stood in solidarity to protest gun violence that has become far too common in today’s society. NDB implemented a liturgy schedule to give time for the walkout as well as an assembly with prayer, student speeches, and a performance from the choir afterwards. Alternatively, those who did not wish to participate were given the option to stay indoors for the duration of the walkout.

Junior Michelle Kleytman, who championed the works that came from the Walkout Committee, expressed her satisfaction with the event.  She says, “I think it was a very successful turnout. We had a huge majority of the school participating, not only from the student body, but from the faculty as well. I’m proud to see that the hard work and dedication of the Walkout Committee paid off.”

At around 9:35am, students were dismissed to walk onto the sidewalk of Ralston Avenue. While walking and waiting until 10:00am, students chanted, “Enough is enough” and “Protect kids, not guns.” Some passing cars honked in support, and some even recorded the students. At 10:00, bells were rung and students and staff went silent for seventeen minutes in honor of the seventeen victims killed in Parkland, Florida. Every minute was marked by the ringing of a bell and a name of a deceased victim spoken out by junior Feauini Saulala.

Senior Isabel Senhaji said, “I felt heard, but also hurt at the same time. On one hand, I thought it was beautiful that our community was able to come together to get our voices out and honor these seventeen minutes, but also hurt at the fact that this is a reality — that we have to pay for the repercussions of the ones before us.”

After the seventeen minutes, the students walked into the Moore Pavillion, again chanting, “No more silence! End gun violence!” The students and faculty were unified in the chants as their voices filled the gym. The assembly began with a prayer, followed by four student speeches, one representative from every class. The speeches incited cheers from a majority of the crowd. NDB was able to stand in solidarity with their peers across the nation. They were able to use their voices and lead a movement for the future.

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