Northwestern students participate in nationwide walkout, demand action on gun control

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Wednesday, April 5, 2023
Northwestern students join in national gun control walkout
Northwestern students joined a national school walkout on Wednesday to demand action on gun violence

EVANSTON, Ill. (WLS) -- Northwestern students joined college and high school students from some 200 schools around the country on Wednesday, walking out of class to make a statement and demand action to control gun violence.

They began by reciting the names of the six people killed in last week's school shooting in Nashville.

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"This is really just the student's way of saying we will not continue to let this happen," said Lily Cohen, Students Demand Action. "We need to do something about it and we need to be the generation to stop this."

In February, a gunman killed three students and injured five others on the campus at Michigan State University. Some Northwestern students say they worry it could happen here and want to be part of the solution.

"I feel like numbers matter, so the more people reach out, the likelier that'll come," said Jung Yean, a Northwestern sophomore.

The students say gun violence is now the leading cause of death for children and teens in this country. There have been more than 130 mass shootings with four or more people shot in the U.S. so far this year, and nearly 10,000 people killed by gun violence so far in 2023.

Rachel Goldsmith was there out of concern for the safety of her 7-year-old son, a first grader.

"I'm anxious every day I send him to school," Goldsmith said.

Rally organizers are urging students and parents to contact lawmakers with their concerns.

"It's just terrible," mother Dori Johnson said. "We have to do something."

The Students Demand Action group is planning another rally next week to urge colleges to avoid investing money from school endowment funds to the gun industry.