A student in California wants to see if his school will support a pro-life walkout after it encouraged students to protest in favor of gun control last week.
Brandon Gillespie, a student at Rocklin High School in Sacramento, told the local CBS station he wants to stage a walkout “to honor all the lives of aborted babies pretty much. All the millions of aborted babies every year.” Using the hashtag #Life, students at the school are in the early stages of their organizing.
The walkout was inspired by Julianne Benzel, a history teacher at Rocklin High who was placed on leave after she questioned if the school’s support for the anti-gun walkout would have been different if it had been against abortion.
Benzel told local media what she told her class, “I just kind of used the example which I know it’s really controversial, but I know it was the best example I thought of at the time—a group of students nationwide, or even locally, decided ‘I want to walk out of school for 17 minutes’ and go in the quad area and protest abortion, would that be allowed by our administration?”
Naeirika Neev, the editor of the Rocklin student paper, thinks a pro-life protest has no place in school, saying, “Abortions aren’t really anything that has to do with school or students here.”
Neev continued, “They have their First Amendment, they can go protest about that anytime anywhere.”
For his part, Gillespie said he’s curious to see how the school reacts, “I would like to see if there really is a double standard and what will come of that.”
The school’s principal has scheduled a meeting with Gillespie for Friday to discuss his plans.