Julie Webber talked to the Chicago Tribune on February 22 about students’ passionate political response to the most recent school shooting in Florida. The February 14th tragedy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School  took seventeen lives, sparking a protest by survivors of the incident. Students across the country showed solidarity through walkouts in which they demanded action on gun violence.

“The students have stood up and said, ‘We’ll be the leaders then.’” –Julie Webber

Yellow type on black background cover of book Beyond ColumbineDr. Webber, a Professor in the Department of Politics and Government, researches mass shootings in civil society. She explained that given political inaction on gun violence, “the students have stood up and said, ‘We’ll be the leaders then.’” The student-led movement against gun violence shows no signs of slowing down, with several more walkouts and marches planned in the next months. Webber added that “This generation, I see, as very rational, altruistic, self-effacing. They just want problems solved. For them, it’s a matter of survival.”

Professor Webber has authored two books on school violence, including the recently published Beyond Columbine: School Violence and the Virtual.