Two high school students from Glasgow with differing political views are organizing a bipartisan gun reform rally.
“Crossing The Aisle for Gun Reform” is set to take place on Saturday, March 17th at 12 p.m. at the Warren County Justice Center.
Among AP classes, homework, extracurriculars and more, 17-year-old Palmer Lessenberry and Autumn Harlow say all they want to do is create a conversation.
“We want to start a conversation of any sorts and just get people talking,” Palmer says, “get people realizing that this is not a partisan issue and that we can come to together and make some sort of change.”
Two friends who normally disagree on politics want to set an example—gun reform has to cross the aisle.
“I shot my first gun at a young age, whereas Palmer has never fired a gun before,” Autumn, who identifies as a conservative, says “A misconception on the right side of the political spectrum is that anytime gun reform is mentioned it’s like “oh they’re going to take all of our guns away.””
Palmer says, “we understand there is a 2nd Amendment in this nation. We just suggest that it should be harder. It shouldn’t be as easy as walking into a gun show and walking out two hours later with a weapon that can do so much destruction.”
At 17-years-old, they say age isn’t a factor—this is their future they’re fighting for together.
“A lot of our class in specific, the junior class, is able to vote in this next election and it’s so important that we get out there and make our voice heard,” Palmer stresses.
From their below-voting-age to their differing political beliefs, Palmer and Autumn know they’re already crossing barriers by organizing this rally—but still, Crossing The Aisle for Gun Reform is a no-brainer for them.
“I’ve learned so much from her,” Autumn says, “and she’s learned so much from me in terms of our political beliefs.”
Palmer says, “there should be regulations. We should be outlawing bump stocks. We should be having universal background checks. We don’t think that necessarily relates to our political identity.”
Autumn notes, “If anything—we just want to be heard.”
The two teens have arranged for six speakers at Saturday’s rally, ranging from lawyers and politicians to mothers and avid gun enthusiasts.
They welcome anyone and everyone to stop by, speak their opinion, and listen to others.