‘We Want Action’: How Riders Like Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum Are Standing Up Against School Gun Violence

‘We Want Action’: How Riders Like Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum Are Standing Up Against School Gun Violence
Meredith Micahels-Beerbaum & daughter Brianne Ph. ©Equestrian Sport Productions
Meredith Micahels-Beerbaum & daughter Brianne Ph. ©Equestrian Sport Productions

This Saturday, March 24th, the equestrian community of Wellington, Florida is uniting in a show of support for child safety in schools. Though they’ll be in the saddle, they’re among many who are standing up in an ongoing mission to keep children safe from gun violence in schools nationwide.

The Context: Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School

Only 40 miles from Wellington in Parkland, Florida, students and faculty were among the 17 victims killed and 17 critically injured in the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School on February 14th.

The incident shook the nation and has resulted in demonstrations and discussions nationwide, including the National School Walkout on March 14 in support of gun control.


Three-time Olympic show jumper Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum is spearheading a demonstration at the Winter Equestrian Festival. She will be joined by her husband Markus Beerbaum, daughter Brianne, and fellow equestrians Beezie Madden, Lauren Hough, Jessica Springsteen, Danielle Torano, and Jennifer Gates, riding in unity into the Palm Beach International Arena.

Did You Know: The #RideForOurLives demonstration is the same day as the #MarchForOurLives rally in Washington, D.C.

The Event Facts

Where: WEF Show Grounds, Palm Beach International Arena

When: 6:00pm, Saturday, March 24th, 2018

*Riders who would like to participate on horseback must arrive in the Rost Arena between 5:30 p.m. and 5:50 p.m. and must wear an ASTA-approved helmet and an assigned WEF or AGDF back number.

How To Watch: tv.coth.com

What Riders Are Saying 

“Personally, I feel enough is enough. There have been far too many innocent lives of children lost at school shootings. I stand together with other members of the equestrian community to demand that something be done. It is the job of our elected lawmakers to decide what exactly that is– whether it be armed guards at every school and/or stricter regulations about who can buy a gun. We want action. We want changes. And we aren’t going to just stand around anymore. Every child has the right to go to school protected and unafraid.” -Meredith Michaels-Beerbaum

“I am joining the #marchforourlives and #rideforourlives movement with members of my equine community, to stand in solidarity with the students of Parkland High School and students across the country. We owe this generation a safer community. I’m looking forward to supporting the students and amplifying the message however we can.” -Jessica Springsteen

How You Can Get Involved

  1. Support #RideForOurLives by sharing, commenting, and tagging personal images on social media.
  2. Download a printable #RideForOurLives sign from Chronicle of the Horse at this link and submit a photo(s) or video(s) of yourself and your horse(s) with the sign through the COTH’s FacebookInstagram, or email at results@coth.com.

*Photo and video submissions will be displayed on the big screen of the PBIEC as the riders enter the ring

PBIEC is also hosting a memorial during the final week of WEF on Saturday, March 31, prior to the evening grand prix where the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School choir will sing, and 17 horses and riders will stand in memorial of the lives lost.

Source: Chronicle of the Horse