Read The Anti-Gun Violence Speech A Student Says She Wrote A Month Before The Shooting At Her School

"We are the future, and we can rewrite our future."

On April 20, a number of the students at Texas' Santa Fe High School joined their peers across the country in walking out of class in protest of gun violence. According to a tweet sent out by a participant, the teens gathered beneath a flagpole flying both the American and Texas state flags, and observed 17 minutes of silence: one for each of the people killed in February during the Parkland, Florida school shooting. They read a poem written by a Parkland survivor, handed out gun violence fact sheets, and discussed ways they could raise awareness about school shootings.


Less than a month after the Santa Fe High School teens' walkout, on May 18, 10 were reported dead at their school. They were killed by a school shooter.

HCSO/Handout via Reuters

In the aftermath of the shooting, a Sante Fe High School student known as kaleidoscopeken on Twitter posted the text of the speech she said she wrote in advance of the April 20 walkout, which was scheduled on the 19-year anniversary of the Columbine High School shooting that killed 13. 

"I didn't end up speaking, but these words are heavy on my mind right now," the student wrote. (Although she did not immediately respond to A Plus' messages, another Santa Fe High School student confirmed that kaleidoscopeken attends the school in an interview.)

Kaleidoscopeken's words, dated April 19 according to the note application they were written in, were as powerful as they were prescient.

"I am standing in front of you today as a peer. However, I am much more. I am another teenager among the thousands in this country who fear every single day that their campuses are too," the note reads. "At this very school, we are exposed to that same fear. And you never think it will be you... until it is you. And you never think that any single day is your last day. But for those 17 students at Parkland. Those 13 at Columbine. Those 20 at Sandy Hook. They didn't think it would be their last day, either."

But, she wrote, gun violence doesn't just put school children at risk: "These deaths, and thousands of deaths around our country every single day all have one connecting root: a gun. Gun violence is not just about school shootings. Or nightclub shootings. Or movie theater shootings. It is about any and every shooting that occurs day in and day out in the United States."

One of the student demonstrators at the April 20 walkout holds a sign reading "Santa Fe High School says #NeverAgain." Courtesy @mukethemusical / Twitter

A lot has changed since the Second Amendment was written, and she implored her readers to participate in that change by voting.

"If you are 18, or 17 and will be 18 by November, I encourage you to register. Register and vote and help make a different America. Because we no longer have muskets. We have AR-15s. And we do not deserve to fear that one day our own lives or those that we love will be taken because adults in our country were too stubborn to make changes to an over 200-year-old law," she wrote.

"People say that children are the future. And they're right. We are the future, and we can rewrite our future."

Isaac Saul contributed to this story.

Cover image via @mukethemusical / Twitter

This story has been updated to reflect new reports that 10 were killed in the Santa Fe High School shooting.


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