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Photos of Bay Area Kids Upstaging Adults at Saturday’s March for Our Lives

They brought more than just really cool signs.

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Under different circumstances, the kiddie lettering and colorful, scribbled-in signs in the hands of tiny demonstrators at Civic Center Plaza at Saturday’s March for Our Lives rally might be adorable, except for the fact that they featured drawings of guns and pleas to “keep us safe.” Thousands gathered to advocate for various gun-related issues, from stricter gun control and the banning of bump stocks to greater police accountability for the killings of unarmed black men (most recently, Sacramento’s Stephon Clark), and in keeping with the national movement, the charge was student led.

Among these leaders was 16-year-old Oakland School for the Arts student and spoken word poet Justin Walton, who performed his piece Glory. “It talks about police shootings and gun violence and wondering if I’m going to be the next one,” Walton said. “Gun violence can happen to anyone.” 

Although many of the young protesters will wait years before voicing their concerns at the ballot box, 12-year-old Marin Country Day School student Charlotte Dodson, who along with her twin sister, Dylan, spoke at the rally, was hopeful that progress is possible in other ways. “I want kids to feel like they can make a change—whether that change is telling their parents to vote for people who believe in gun control or that change is speaking out at a place like this,” Dodson said. “Every citizen should have a voice no matter how old they are.” 

 

 

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