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Students Protest Failed Background Check Legislation

Photo: Kendra Bobowick

Ezekiel DeLasho holds a sign saying, “Real Men Get Background Checks,” during a student protest April 18 outside the National Shooting Sports Foundation.

For at least the fourth time this year, the corner of Wasserman Way and Queen Street became the site of a demonstration, with protesters waving handmade signs outside the headquarters of National Sports Shooting Foundation (NSSF).

Reacting to failed background check legislation as part of stronger federal gun control laws, students from Newtown and surrounding towns lifted their signs toward passing cars starting at 3 pm Thursday, April 18.

Twelve year old Owen Prevey-Sullivan said, “So many people have died — no one else has to die.”

Beside Owen and touting a sign of his own that read “Real Men Get Background Checks,” Ezekiel DeLasho said, “If you need to have a gun, you can at least get a background check.”

Newtown student Zoe Eggleston’s emotions have “gone up and down,” she said, as she continues to follow news of proposed gun law legislation in the wake of 12/14. Her feelings “really went down hill,” she said, when background check amendments failed earlier this week.

“It’s is pathetic that people don’t see common sense things,” she said.

Standing on the curb along Wasserman Way and holding a sign, she said, “I wanted to show that we’re not going to stop vocalizing how crazy it is trying to find change.”

Fairfield teen Mia DeLasho has many friends in Newtown, and believes background checks for gun ownership are necessary. She also spoke against high capacity magazine ammunition.

Eleanor Curley stood with her peers, saying, “So many have lost their lives to guns.” Background checks “are the least we can do,” she said.

Parent Melissa Prevey stressed the importance of involving the students in current events.

“They’re going to inherit all these bad gun laws,” she said. “They should be in this for the long haul.

Although she has tried to spare the 12/14 details from younger children, the teenagers need to be involved now, she said.

“If they get involved with the knowledge that this is not an overnight process,” said Ms Prevey, “we can work together for new and meaningful change.”

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