A group of Florida students said they felt silenced after walkouts supporting slain Parkland students turned political.
Rockledge, FL – A group of pro-Second Amendment students participated in a brief walkout at Rockledge High School on Friday, to show their support for gun rights.
Approximately 75 teens participated in the demonstration, which was organized by sophomore Chloe Deaton and junior Anna Delaney, Florida Today reported.
The students prominently displayed a Thin Blue Line flag, as well as an American flag, as they paraded to the school’s track. Some carried signs that read, “I support the right to bear arms,” and “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.”
Some wore President Trump’s signature “Make America Great Again” hats, while others dressed in camouflage clothing.
Once the group convened at the track, “God Bless America” was played over the loudspeakers.
“We were built on certain rights, and that was one of the original rights, that we should have the right to bear arms,” Deaton told her peers, as she wore a shirt that read, “my rights don’t end where your feelings begin.”
She went on to share a 1983 quote from former President Ronald Reagan, who said, “The Constitution does not say that government shall decree the right to keep and bear arms. The Constitution says ‘… the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.'”
Twenty minutes after the demonstration began, the students returned to class.
Many of the students also participated in the Mar. 14 National School Walkout, as a gesture of support for the victims of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre in Parkland, FOX News reported.
But just because they supported the victims, that didn’t mean that they endorsed the political agendas that became tied to the walkouts, some students said.
Instead, they felt silenced.
“In the beginning, it started as a memorial to the Parkland students. And that’s how it should have stayed,” Deaton told Florida Today.
“It’s all over the news right now that all students hate guns,” Rockledge High junior Zachary Schneider said. “I wanted to show that not all students feel that way.”
Deaton expressed similar sentiments.
“We should not let our rights be taken because someone else does something wrong,” she said.
Delaney added that she would support the idea of arming specially trained, unidentified members of the school’s faculty to help protect students.
“I wouldn’t mind deeper background checks, of course, but the Second Amendment will not be infringed upon,” she added.