Kalispell Students Plan Walkout to Protest Masks
I know we're all getting tired of talking about masks, but school kids in Montana are sick of being forced to wear masks. And now, students in Kalispell have been planning to protest. (We'll keep you updated as we see coverage following the event)
According to The Daily Inter Lake:
Glacier High School junior Kate Opre is one of the co-organizers for the walkout, which is scheduled at 2:30 p.m. at both Glacier and Flathead high schools. “We’re not against other people wearing masks. We want it to be optional to wear,” she said, adding that she feels the physical distancing and regular disinfection of classrooms and shared spaces she has seen go on at Glacier should be adequate.
The Montana Daily Gazette spoke with the students planning the protest, including 15 year old Madeline Bondy, a freshman at Glacier High School:
Since the announcement of the protest, Bondy’s phone has been ringing off the hook. “People are very excited,” Bondy stated. Many community members, as well as many students, want to help stand up against the masking tyranny.
***Update: I haven't seen any local news coverage of the protest yet, but a Google image search pulled up this photo from The Daily Inter Lake early Wednesday morning.
On Tuesday morning, we got a phone call from a parent of one of the kids helping to organize the protest against being forced to wear masks in the Kalispell public schools. Lloyd talked about the reason the kids decided to start the protest, and he also talked about what he sees as the hypocrisy from the public schools- which allowed pro-gun control protests and walkouts to take place back in 2018. (Check out the audio below)
Remember the gun-control walkouts that were staged back in March of 2018, the school protests that were orchestrated by former New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg's gun-control front groups? Here's some of our coverage from back in March of 2018.
Flashback from March 2018: Walkout Flop? Thousands of Billings Students Stay in Class |
Larry Mayer had the money shot photo for The Billings Gazette. As students gathered out front of Billings Senior High School after walking out of class, the Senior High billboard had the words "attendance matters" scrolling above.
As it turns out, only 250 of the 1,900 students actually took part in the protest that was initially prompted by the Bloomberg-backed gun control front group "Moms Demand Action." Even fewer students walked out of the cross-town Skyview High School.
As Matt Hoffman reported for the Gazette, one Billings student unfurled a pro 2nd Amendment flag with the words "2nd Amendment- America's Original Homeland Security" written on it. That apparently provoked an angry response from the pro-gun control side.
Former State Senate Majority Leader Jeff Essmann was quick to point out via Twitter that, while headlines reported on the hundreds of students who walked out of school, thousands more decided to stay in class.
His message was reinforced by the following quote from one Senior High student interviewed by KTVQ-TV:
"I think the people that started the walkout and were in charge of it really did push that it should be bipartisan," said Piper Stephens, a Senior High student who chose to stay inside during the walkout. "There were a lot of signs about gun control, more gun control, and I think that that just kind of reinforced my choice to stay in."
Meanwhile, in Columbia Falls, at least 50 students decided to hold their own counter protest, according to Montana Public Radio.
The Daily Inter Lake in Kalispell first reported on the pro-2nd Amendment counter protest on Tuesday.
“We want to state again that the intention is to honor the victims, but we are taking a different stance when it comes to gun control. The people running this [walkout] event have tried to claim that this is not a protest, but we can state the obvious here and that it is indeed a protest against guns, Congress, and the president himself,” Shewalter said.