By IAN AUSTIN & PARKER FISH • Special to www.AllOTSEGO.com
Abbey Goulding didn’t mince words this morning when it came to telling her fellow Oneonta High School students how she felt about the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., on the one-month anniversary of the shooting that left 17 dead.
“Kids who should have been standing up on stage like this one in the spring, wearing the cap and gown are now lying in caskets under the ground because our government couldn’t control the weapons in America or the people getting a hold of them,” said Goulding. “So now it’s our time to be their voices that they lost too soon.”
Oneonta and Cooperstown high school students joined thousands of students across the United States in demonstrations to supporting the victims of the school gun violence.
“What school, festival or movie theater is next? Will I be next?” said OHS’ Caroline Bagby. “I am tired of having to worry about these things in my day-to-day life. Our lives matter more than guns, and if they don’t see that now they never will.”
A contingent of two dozen also gathered outside the school with signs, and others sold raffle tickets to raise money to buy school supplies for Parkland students.
At Cooperstown, nearly 100 students walked out in front of the building and read the biographies of the 17 dead aloud. They were also opportunities for students to write to the victims’ families or their local representatives to express their feelings on gun violence.
Students from both schools will participate in the March for Our Lives on Saturday, March 24. In Oneonta, the students will march from the school to Muller Plaza; Cooperstown students will join a rally in Cobleskill.
“We stand in solidarity,” said OHS’ Matthew Frederick. “Can our leaders say the same?”