Carson students join nationwide protest of immigration reform
Appeal Staff Writer
More than 200 students walked out of Carson High School on Monday morning to protest the immigration reform bill that would make it a felony to be an illegal immigrant.
“We want to make the point that everyone has the right to support their family,” said Richone Cancimilla, 16, who helped organize the protest.
Nationwide, tens of thousands of students, organized by messages posted online, walked out of schools in a second week of protests against the legislation recently passed by the U.S. House of Representatives.
Aaron Davalos, 15, said he helped organize the walkout to protest an unfair and unjust bill.
“When people come to our country, we don’t kick them out,” Davalos said.
The protesters carried homemade signs with slogans like “100 percent Mexico,” “We work and pay taxes too,” and “(expletive) HR-4437.”
“We are marching because we are proud to be Mexican,” said Yadira Rojas, 15.
Carson High School students assembled in a parking lot across from the high school during the start of the lunch period and began walking.
Organizers handed out fliers at the school asking students to protest because “We want to stand up for people who deserve a chance that they don’t have in their own country.”
The protesters walked past the Capitol, Bordewich-Bray Elementary School and Carson Middle School before stopping at the Governor’s Mansion. They then continued to march as far north as College Parkway before returning to the high school. The protest lasted several hours before dispersing.
Several students wrote their country of origin with magic marker on their bodies and smeared red, green and white paint on their faces. At the Governor’s Mansion the group draped the front placard with the Mexican flag amid shouts of “Si se puede (yes we can).”
Between two and five Carson City Sheriff’s deputies shadowed the protesters during the march with additional support provided by four Nevada Highway Patrol cars during several stops along the way.
Sheriff Kenny Furlong said the protesters were peaceful and generally well-mannered.
Furlong said the sheriff’s department did receive a number of calls about the protest. While an exact number was not known, Furlong said most of the complaints were dealing with traffic problems or verbal exchanges with protesters.
“We had sporadic problems, mostly verbal exchanges, but the kids were generally not obstructive to traffic and they did comply with our orders,” Furlong said.
“We are marching here trying to get our rights back and let it be known,” said protester Michell Soriano, 16.
About 135 high school students from Lake Tahoe and Truckee high schools also marched in their communities.
More than 500,000 people in Los Angeles protested on Saturday and tens of thousands in Phoenix and Milwaukee last week.
Hundreds of high school students from the San Francisco Bay area joined 20 hunger strikers who concluded a week-long fast to protest the bill by leading a march in San Francisco.
• The Associated Press contributed to this report. Contact reporter Jarid Shipley at email@example.com or 881-1217.