Colleges Promise Not To Punish Kids Suspended For Protesting Gun Violence

by Christina Marfice
Image via Dartmouth / Twitter

Colleges are tweeting promises to not penalize kids suspended for protesting gun violence

The teen uprising that’s happening right now is damn heartwarming to watch. Kids who aren’t even old enough to vote have taken over the political conversation about gun access in the U.S. following the deadly Feb. 14 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. These kids have staged lie-ins, organized marches and started planning a nationwide school walkout to demand that politicians — you know, those adults who keep seeing kids being killed by guns but never do anything about it — actually make change that will save their lives.

There’s no question: These kids are heroes, and they’re an inspiration to us all.

Only there are school administrators who don’t see it that way. Students who participate in protest events are facing suspension and other punishment in some school districts.

“Life is all about choices and every choice has a consequence whether it be positive or negative,” a Texas superintendent told Buzzfeed. “We will discipline no matter if it is 1, 50, or 500 students involved. All will be suspended for three days and parent notes will not alleviate the discipline.”

Buzzfeed reports that another school district in Texas and one in Wisconsin also warned students that they would be punished if they missed school because of marches or walkouts (though the Wisconsin district later clarified that students who had permission from their parents to miss school would be fine).

Honestly, this is ridiculous. How many times are adults going to fail these kids? They’ve sat by for years watching politicians they can’t vote for offer nothing but “thoughts and prayers” after their peers are brutally murdered, and now that they’re trying to do something about it, they’re facing suspension from school? This is the message we want to send the kids who are already doing more for the future of this country than most adults? Come the fuck on.

Luckily, not everyone is hell-bent on shutting the kids down. A ton of colleges have been tweeting that getting suspended from their high schools for participating in protests will not affect kids’ applications or admissions status. Frankly, it’s gratifying as hell to see these kids get the support and encouragement they deserve.

Also, in case any kids (or their parents) are stressin’ about this, here’s some food for thought:

And for kids who need a little extra help phrasing the admissions essay that will make them sound like the world-savers they are right now, this angel is here for you:

These kids are literally shaping a future for this country that they want to live in. Let’s all recognize that and give them the support they need to do it.