LUBBOCK, Texas — On Thursday, Nov. 2 a group of Texas Tech students came together at the free speech area of campus on Thursday to protest for Palestinians. Some signs read “ceasefire for the children” and protestors chanted phrases like “Free, free Palestine” as they walked around campus.
Hamas militants invaded Israel on Oct. 7 and killed around 1,400 people, most of them civilians. Since then, Israel has responded by attacking the Gaza Strip. According to Palestinian health officials in Gaza, the attacks by Israel have since killed more than 9,000 people as of Thursday. Most of those killed in Gaza were also civilians.
The protestors were asking for peace and for people to educate themselves on the events currently occurring as well as the history of Palestine.
“I want people to genuinely hear what is happening to Palestine, what is happening to Gazans and to understand what’s happening,” Mariam Elgarhy, a Texas Tech freshman and protest participant said.
The group protesting also hoped to be a voice for Palestinians who are far from Lubbock right now.
“We’re here to make sure that we shine the light on the people that can’t speak right now,” Texas Tech sophomore, Adam Matter said.
Matter said when he sees new atrocities happen, he feels worried for his friends who have loved ones in Palestine.
“Honestly, the past four weeks have been horrible. I wake up every morning with a new news title … a church got bombed, a hospital got bombed,” Matter said.
Matter is not the only one feeling torn down by the news he sees. Elgarhy said she feels heartbroken.
“I’m always asked, do you condemn Hamas? Do you condemn Hamas? And I do – all of us condemn the killing of innocent civilians. It doesn’t matter what religion they are, what ethnicity – all that matters is it was an innocent civilian that was killed,” Elgarhy said.
While the death toll continues to rise in Gaza, the group of protestors are leaning on each other.
“All of us actually have been praying here at the local mosque. We’ve been talking to families that need help. We’ve been trying to send help to Palestinian families,” Matter said.
Many of the people protesting in support of Palestinians on Thursday were a part of a protest at Texas Tech’s campus a few weeks ago. At that time, supporters of Israel were also out there. On Thursday, there were no counter-protests, however, supporters of Israel held their own events throughout October to show their solidarity with Israel.