When Morse High School senior Eli Goodrich addressed more than 1,000 people on the Brunswick Mall Saturday as part of the March for Our Lives event, he acknowledged the backlash against the movement had taken a dark turn.

“Grown adults, the same people who said that we could be what we wanted to be and do what we wanted to do and say what we wanted to say, are putting us down for taking a stand,” Goodrich said. “They’re calling us names, implying that it’s our fault, and even going as far as to threaten us with violence.”

Goodrich’s remarks, however, are more eloquent than many who are criticizing and/or trolling the students and their movement on social media.

In response to the backlash, we want to speak directly to the local students who chose to participate in the recent walkouts, and to those who took part in the March for Our Lives demonstration on the Brunswick Mall: Some folks are going to ridicule you. Some will troll you on social media. Some may cyberbully you to the point where you want to give up the very same voice you have just found.

Our advice — don’t let them.

Know this:

• Many of these folks went to the same schools as you, pre-Parkland, pre-Sandy Hook, pre-Columbine. They weren’t high schoolers at a time before school lockdowns, before every unfamiliar face in a school corridor appeared to pose a threat.

• Remember, as much as you have a right to speak your mind, you ought to have the right to attend school without fearing for your life.

• Those opposing stricter gun laws have the right to disagree with you, and accept that there may be common ground. Like you, students who counter-protested during Morse High School’s walkout on Friday have every right to be heard.

• Learning to speak your mind using impassioned but well-reasoned arguments is part of your education as well. In fact, you may find that it’s crucial skill to have as an adult.

• Finally, you have the support of many in the community, including this paper. Find strength in that.

To the rest of our readers, especially adults: Disagree with the protesters, if you feel it’s necessary. But don’t be the next Leslie Gibson, who threw away his chance at doing real good for the state of Maine after trolling two Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students. One can be passionate about one’s Second Amendment rights without resorting to outright dismissing one’s point merely on the basis of age, or the lack of a high school diploma.

If you want to change how these young folks feel, you might start by leading by example.

In any event, no amount of trolling, bullying or condescension seems to be effective, anyway. As Goodrich said: “We will not sit down. We will continue our actions until a change takes place. We will no longer sit in our classrooms and schools having to worry about how sturdy our classroom door is or how far the fall out the window will be or how our teachers and classmates will respond to the speed and power of bullets and the shredding of bodies.”