Fox & Friends claims parents were “misled” about nationwide gun violence school walkout

Steve Doocy: “Because it is about gun control … parents should probably have the opportunity to opt their kids out if they don't want them involved"

From the March 15 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

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STEVE DOOCY (CO-HOST): Thousands of students across the country walked out of class in what was originally billed as a memorial to the 17 victims of Parkland high school, but quickly turned into a march on gun control.


How are parents being misled about what that march was all about?

JULIE GUNLOCK (INDEPENDENT WOMEN'S FORUM): Well, parents are being told that the walkout yesterday was a memorial to the 17 victims of the school shooting in Parkland. And what frustrated me was that if you look at the website of the organizers of the national school walkout, they were very clear that this walkout was to pressure Congress to pass restrictive gun laws. I think a lot of parents weren't aware of that, and I have a feeling that many probably wouldn't have allowed their children to participate in that if they had known.

DOOCY: Sure, sure.


DOOCY: Now, here's the thing, Julie: If you're a parent and you know that your kids are going to go out for a memorial, I don't know that anybody would have a problem with that. But because it is about gun control, which so polarizes this nation, it's a political thing, and parents should probably have the opportunity to opt their kids out if they don't want them involved.

GUNLOCK: Well, many schools said that it is optional, they didn't have to do it. But you imagine the pressure, half your -- your child is alone -- is in his -- the class room, half of his class stands up and walks out. We all understand that peer pressure is an issue, and what's so sad is that, because this was billed as a memorial to the 17 victims of Parkland, it made it look even worse if you remained in your seat. The thing is, my family, we knew the true intentions of this and we didn't want our children to participate for that reason.

DOOCY: Right, well, and ultimately, Julie, the schools teamed up with the march organizers because they coordinated the walkout, which was about gun control.

GUNLOCK:  Yeah, in my own school, in Alexandria, Virginia, they actually allowed special permission slips to be used so that more kids could be pulled out with their parents not present. Normally, a parent has to be present to sign their child out. My school created special accommodations for this. I wonder if they would do a special accommodation if it was a right-leaning protest. I'm doubtful on that.

DOOCY: Yeah, you're probably right. In your op-ed you write, “Taxpayers should ask, 'Is this is acceptable use of school funds,'” because, ultimately your taxes paid for it.

GUNLOCK: Right, absolutely. And, again, I think this isn't the role of schools. I guess I'm old fashioned. I think school is for learning. School should be a place where kids feel comfortable, and comfortable to discuss things. But this, this certainly was an unfortunate misstep, I think. I think schools getting involved in this and helping to coordinate was not a good use of their time.


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