The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
Since 1888
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.
The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University

The Vanderbilt Hustler

The official student newspaper of Vanderbilt University.

IN PHOTOS: Nashville community rallies downtown, at Fisk University after Covenant School shooting

Around 1,000 Vanderbilt students marched to the Capitol, and some spoke alongside Vice President Kamala Harris in a last-minute visit after the Tennessee Statehouse expelled two lawmakers that stood with protestors.
Nikita Rohila
Protestor holds up a pane of glass as if he has been shot through a window, as photographed on April 3, 2023. (Hustler Multimedia/Nikita Rohila)

After a week of community reflection and vigils, students reacted to the Covenant School shooting by organizing rallies and walkouts. Protestors were reinvigorated by the expulsion of Rep. Justin Jones (D-Nashville) and Rep. Justin Pearson (D-Memphis), who stood with student protestors and advocated for gun reform at the Capitol after the shooting. 

April 4 Walkout

Students from Vanderbilt gathered on Magnolia Lawn for a walkout organized by Vanderbilt’s chapter of Students Demand Action and March for Our Lives. Free red SDA shirts were distributed and worn by many students as they gathered and created signs for the march. 

The Vanderbilt community marched down Music Row and onto Broadway, shutting down the road, before they made it to the Capitol. Many observers and students gathered on the side of the road and peered through school windows to watch the procession. Drivers also honked in support as they passed.

The crowd joined up with an estimated 7,000 total protesters to listen to speakers from various gun legislation activists, local organizers, and those affected by gun violence. They led the crowd in chants and calls for action. 

Representatives expelled

On April 6, the Tennessee House of Representatives passed resolutions to expel the three representatives who spoke at the gun reform protest on March 30 following the Covenant School shooting. Although Jones and Pearson were expelled, the resolution to expel Rep. Gloria Johnson (D-Knoxville) failed. Jones was reinstated as the interim representative on April 10.

In support of the “Tennessee Three” 

In support of the expelled representatives, Vice President Kamala Harris joined student speakers, student spectators and community members in the Fisk University Memorial Chapel. The line to enter the chapel wound through Fisk’s campus. It concluded with metal detectors at the entrance to the chapel. 

Secret Service and MNPD officers alike surrounded the area to organize the crowd and ensure safety for the representatives and Harris. Crowds were kept on the far side of the road from the chapel and remained peaceful with signage in support of the expelled legislators and gun reform. 

View comments (1)
About the Contributors
Barrie Barto, Senior Staff Photographer
Barrie Barto ('25) is majoring in medicine, health & society with minors in communication of science & technology and neuroscience in the College of Arts and Science. She previously served as Photography Director. Outside of The Hustler, you can find Barrie cheering on the St. Louis Blues or tracking down the best gluten-free food in Nashville. She can be reached at [email protected].
Nikita Rohila, Deputy Social Media Director
Nikita Rohila ('25) is from a small town in Arkansas and is majoring in psychology and medicine, health and society in the College of Arts and Science. During her free time, she enjoys roaming around the city and getting cinematic-style shots for her photography account! You can reach her at [email protected].
Amelia Simpson, Staff Photographer and Graphics Staffer
Amelia Simpson ('25) hails from Brisbane, Australia and is a student in the College of Arts and Sciences majoring in public policy. Outside of her work in the Hustler’s multimedia sections, Amelia is a member of the club rowing and equestrian teams. You can reach her at [email protected]
More to Discover

Comments (1)

The Vanderbilt Hustler welcomes and encourages readers to engage with content and express opinions through the comment sections on our website and social media platforms. The Hustler reserves the right to remove comments that contain vulgarity, hate speech, personal attacks or that appear to be spam, commercial promotion or impersonation. The comment sections are moderated by our Editor-in-Chief, Rachael Perrotta, and our Social Media Director, Chloe Postlewaite. You can reach them at [email protected] and [email protected].
All The Vanderbilt Hustler picks Reader picks Sort: Newest
Notify of
1 Comment
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
10 months ago

Kamala Harris knows how to tackle this situation