High School students at some 200 high schools are preparing to stage a walkout on Wednesday, May 2 but they’re not pushing for gun control, they are “Standing for the Second Amendment,” according to organizer Will Riley.
The 18-year-old Carlsbad, N.M. high school senior said in a telephone interview that “The media portrays my generation as anti-gun, anti-constitution. The fact is, when I look around at my fellow students, half of them just don’t agree with that.”
He told KRQE News that “Parkland (high school) students don’t speak for me.”
Riley was alluding to students such as Florida student and media darling David Hogg, who has gotten a lot of air time since spearheading a student movement that many feel has been hijacked by the gun prohibition lobby. But for Riley and his fellow students, there are two sides to the gun issue and so far only one side has really been presented, in their opinion.
“I think that our Republic should function as an adversarial system,” he observed, “where you have two sides to each story and you get those sides before making a decision. If this was a trial, we’ve only had the prosecution speak (so far). Now we need the defense. I want to make sure that both sides are heard.”
According to the Facebook page for Let’s Stand for the Second, more than 200 schools are registered to participate in the May 2 walkout, which will occur at 10 a.m. in each time zone. According to a map posted at the group’s website, which appears to be supported by the Tea Party Patriots’ citizen fund, high schools from Florida to northwest Washington are participating.
The student group notes on its online announcement, “We do not want walkouts to interfere with any school-wide standardized testing. You may need to adjust the time for what works best for your school. We want to help make your voices be heard, but we do not want to negatively impact testing that you and your classmates have spent the entire year preparing to take.”
“I just want to make sure you can still stand up for your Second Amendment rights and still graduate,” Riley said.