Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Chester High School students walkout in solidarity with national gun violence protest

Chester High School students walked out of school in protest of gun violence in solidarity with a nationwide call for action brought on by the mass shooting in Parkland, Florida on February 14, 2018. They honored the 17 lives lost but they want you to know how much they too have been affected by gun violence in their community.

They gave a speech.

On behalf of the class of 2019, I’d like to share the impact that gun violence has had on our city.
Gun Violence has...
·       Given us the feelings of hostility every time we  
step outside
·       Given us a paranoid outlook
·       Created losses that isolate us emotionally
·       Become a regular part of life in this city
·       Stolen our youth and our childhoods
·       Forced us to be strong beyond our years
·       Created an unending cycle of hopelessness
·       Made us prisoners in our homes
·       Forced us to suffer along with others, as we empathize with their losses.
As a result, of the violence we have witnessed,
We should...
·       Be more respectful to one another
·       Be mindful of the feelings and needs
·       Not give in to peer pressure
·       Seriously evaluate the validity of our conflicts
·       Settle conflicts sensibly
·       Establish a city culture that is undivided by
·       territory and affiliations
·       Show value and gratitude for the lives we live each day

They shared a poem.

I’d like to end by sharing a poem that exemplifies the self-destructive impact of gun violence in Chester.

Before You Pull the Trigger…

Before you pull the trigger,
Know your victim has a name.
Like you, he’s disappointed with
Life’s sacrifice and pain.

Before you pull the trigger,
Know he yearns for better days.
Like you, he simply needs a chance
To mend his sinful ways.

Before you pull the trigger,
Know he has a family, too.
Who never will forget the loss
Of all you’ll put them through.

So, before you pull the trigger,
Take the time to think it through.
The person you’re about to kill,
Is someone just like you.
By Viola Norman

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