With only two weeks left in the school year, hundreds of students from Centaurus High skipped afternoon lessons Thursday to line the sidewalks of South Boulder Road.
The students were not collectively skipping class to enjoy the May sunshine. Instead, they were participating in a staged walkout to support women’s reproductive rights.
Walkouts occurred Thursday at several schools across the state, including those in Erie, Lafayette, Longmont, Louisville, Wheat Ridge, Lakewood, and Golden.
The protests came just 10 days after a U.S. Supreme Court draft majority opinion in favor of overturning Roe v. Wade was leaked to the public.
“If they can get rid of women’s rights and the ability to get abortions, what’s next? They could get rid of gay marriage and trans rights. It would be a huge step back,” said Centaurus senior Alanakai, who asked that her surname not be published.
“I think that white people, especially men, have always been in power. If we had more diversity in government, we would have more opinions and different life experiences contributing to these huge decisions,” she added.
“For me, it’s mostly about church versus state. That should not be connected at all in 2022,” said Centaurus junior Yasman, who also asked her surname not be published.
The peaceful protest began at 11 a.m., with students walking toward U.S. 287 and back. Some held signs, while others chanted, “You say no choice; we say pro choice.”
At some point along the walk, students from Louisville Middle School joined the protest.
Toward the end of the walkout, a group of four boys straggled behind, one of them carrying a sign that read “Their body, their choice.”
“We’re out here today because of women’s rights. Women’s rights are human rights,” said one of the boys in the group.
“Abortion rights are human rights!” another one of them shouted.