Yesterday marked Temple’s second walk out in protest of gun violence and reform in recent months. Students and faculty at the university, as well as schools around the city, marched out of class to call for legislation and reform of America’s gun laws.
The protest comes as April 20th marks the 19th anniversary of the infamous Columbine shooting in 1999, in which two seniors killed fellow students and faculty in their high school. Schools across the country participated in the event, with Temple’s own event garnering student interest in the thousands on its Facebook page.
Speaking to Temple Update, senior Adam Leopold said “Today was a fantastic success. Turnout was never a concern of ours. We would have been happy to speak to 10 people who really care rather than 1000 who just wanted to get out of class.”
The event also featured public speakers, students, and faculty, all who made their voice heard during the large gathering at the Bell Tower. Local Temple community members who have lost loved ones to violence were also in attendance to make their voices heard, and a moment of silence was held for those lost to gun violence.
“We did have a wonderful turnout and a lot of passionate attendees who had the chance to speak out on their own to accompany our slew of speakers. We did something really good today,” Leopold said.
Protesters hope that events like these will spark conversation and further legislation in gun violence in the future, and more walkouts are expected down the line.