Opinion: “#WalkUpNotOut” hashtag points fingers at the wrong people

Sarah Thurman, Staff Writer

Instead of walking out of class, walk up to a student who is isolated and be nice to them. While this seems like a good idea at first, when it is looked deeper into it, this is victim blaming.

The entire point of the walk out was for students to take a stand as they feel that the Government is not doing their job of taking care of this situation. After the shooting on February 14th in Parkland, Florida, students have begun to demand better reform on gun laws and for people in control to stand up.

Instead of helping the students, people are choosing to call out students. Telling them to walk up instead of out is such a typical thing for today’s conservative Americans who like to ignore real everyday situations.

The youth of today is trying to stand for something they believe in and are asking for support from the American community only for them to be told that they are in the wrong.

It’s not unusual for people to try and change a movement to become inclusive to all. For example, “All lives matter!”, which was used to combat the “exclusive” political stand of “Black lives matter.”

They chose to ignore the problems at hand and make them into something that will bring less attention. Once students began to express that they were going to walk out and protest gun violence people on social media began to tell them how the idea was wrong. Telling students to walk up, not out began to spread on social media and soon enough everyone was posting about it trying to ignore the real problem at hand.

Is walking up going to show the government that we need reforms on guns or that the students are sick of being ignored and told they are too young to have opinions? Walking out is something that allows them to protest and make headlines.

Walking up is victim-blaming. Yes, it wouldn’t hurt kids to be nicer, but telling them that they are the cause of school shootings is wrong. Walking up is suggesting that the kids who have died in these shootings would have lived if they had been “nicer.”

This is also making kids across America feel more excluded and seemingly like an outcast even more. The logic of a walk up is telling students to walk up to the kids that they feel like would be the ones to bring a gun to school.

Imagine being one of those misjudged kids to get on social media and see that the kids only came up to you because they fear that you would kill them. This hashtag is telling students that it is their fault that school shootings are happening. This entire trend is taking away from the fact that the problem we face is an epidemic of gun violence and is placing the blame on students.

They act as if the entire problem of gun violence can be solved by just being nicer to people.

Edited by: Brea Childs

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