Memorial for Sandy Hook victims includes ideas for change


Claire Goodwin-Kelly, Sports Editor

On Wednesday, Students for Gun Legislation (SFGL), which is a student-run, non-partisan gun control organization, will be hosting a memorial at First Presbyterian Church downtown at 7 p.m. The vigil will be honoring victims of the December 14, 2012 shooting that occurred in Newtown, Connecticut, at Sandy Hook Elementary School. 

The murder of twenty first and second graders, along with six teachers, sparked a large diaologue over gun laws in America immediately following the tragedy. Along with honoring the victims and their families, SFGL are using their platform to inform attendees of gun violence in Kalamazoo, the effect gun violence has on the community, and ways to help their fight for common gun control laws. 

“We’ve created a system to utilize community members in our fight against gun violence… we will offer a lot of information about gun violence in Kalamazoo and the effect on students, the effect on the community itself,” said senior Emma Higart-Griff, co-chair of SFGL. “Basically our goal here is to use this anniversary of Sandy Hook to encourage people to consider how gun violence affects their lives and the lives around them in ways that they don’t notice and to participate in the fight towards change.” 

Hilgart-Griff says a lot of Kalamazoo residents aren’t aware of the presence gun violence has in Kalamazoo, saying that over 75% of homicides in the county are from guns. The memorial will include several different speakers from schools around the county.

Hilgart-Griff said,“I think it’s really important that we as a community realize no one person can change the situation America is in, and if we’re going to fix this and save each other and save ourselves we have to work together.”