Colorado students attending a vigil for a recent school shooting that killed one and injured eight, said they felt excluded after politicians took to the stage, The Denver Post reports.
Over 100 students and several hundred parents from STEM School Highland Ranch, located just outside Denver, Colorado, attended the vigil organized by advocates for gun control.
However, after Rep. Jason Crow, D-Colo., and Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., spoke about reforming gun laws, the students realized “this was not about us,” as one student said, according to The Daily Beast.
“We can do our own vigil,” the student added.
Local anchor Kyle Clark of Denver’s 9NEWS tweeted just after midnight on Thursday: “STEM School students walked out of a vigil tonight after [Crow] & [Bennet] spoke. Students said their grief was being politicized. They later returned, took the mic, and some said they didn't want to be used to promote gun control.”
The Post notes that the vigil turned into a spontaneous protest about politics and the media. The students reportedly chanted “mental health,” before returning to the gym to take part in an open-microphone exchange.
The Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, one of the vigil’s organizers, later issued an apology to the students.
“We are deeply sorry any part of this vigil did not provide the support, caring and sense of community we sought to foster and facilitate and which we know is so crucial to communities who suffer the trauma of gun violence,” they wrote in a statement, according to 9NEWS.
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