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Dublin High School Senior Challenges Dublin School Board to Support National Walkouts

February 27, 2018

Dublin High School Class of ’18 senior Evelyn Morehead presented this statement during the open comments portion of tonight’s Dublin Unified School District Board of Trustees meeting.

Good evening, my name is Evelyn Morehead and I am a senior at Dublin High School. Students at Dublin High School are planning to walk out of class on March 14, the one month anniversary of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting. We are also planning on participating in the National School Walkout on April 20th, which is the anniversary of Columbine.

As you may be aware, there have been multiple incidents of gunfire on school campuses since the beginning of 2018. Our Dublin community is not immune from issues concerning mental health and gun violence threats. As students, we feel helpless and know that without change, these acts of school violence will repeat themselves. So, we are tired of the status quo and as young adults we are taking a stand and demanding change. We are advocating for stricter gun laws and access to better mental health care. Students should only have to go to school with the worries of tests and quizzes, not with worries about their safety.

In the words of Emma Gonzalez, a student, survivor, and activist from Stoneman Douglas High School, “We are tired of practicing school shooter drills and feeling scared of something we should never have to think about. We are tired of being ignored. So we are speaking up for those who don’t have anyone listening to them, for those who can’t talk about it just yet, and for those who will never speak again. We are furious, and we are using our words fiercely and desperately because that’s the only thing standing between us and this happening again.”

I am here asking for your support of these students who will be walking out to protest school violence. I am asking that no student be looked down upon for their choice to participate or not participate. I am asking that all students be supported in their decisions of how to address this issue and advocate for change.

Related: Parkland Student Emma González Opens Up About Her Fight for Gun Control (Bazaar Magazine)



3 Comments leave one →
  1. James Oldani permalink
    February 28, 2018 11:06 am

    I am deeply saddened by the recent shooting assault at Marjory Stoneman Douglas HS as I am saddened and frustrated by all of the recent assaults on soft targets. Feeding the mass hysteria with skewed facts does little to help. The “18 incidents of gunfire on school campuses since the beginning of 2018” has been debunked by the Washington Post back on February 15th, the day after the shooting in South Florida (see the link below). Many opportunities existed for folks to do their jobs which could have prevented this particular shooting, beyond just access to a certain type of weapon. The local LEO responding to dozens of domestic calls involving this individual, the FBI given a tip with a name months in advance, the state evaluators that deemed Cruz “not a threat” (Really? – What would constitute a threat?), the local responding LEO who only monitored the active shooter and did NOT engage. Many potential school assaults are actually thwarted by those folks doing their jobs diligently, but because there is no major media event to be dramatized, these unsung heroes, preventing a potential assault, are “NOT News”. Rather than stage a walkout, perhaps all the students time would be better invested in learning about the situations, educating themselves in the actual existing laws and where real improvement could be achieved and dialoging amongst themselves, discussing that “Yes we could face this and what will we do to be prepared?” This would be more productive than joining an emotional procession that will only be a spectacle and provide no real, substantive improvement. I am frustrated also, but I will not waste my time walking out on my responsibilities. James Oldani

    • February 28, 2018 12:25 pm

      (Evelyn’s father responding) From the Selma to Montgomery marches to the immigration march on SFO actions that build public awareness are not a “waste of time” – they build political will. What is needed in the US is solving gun violence to become a national priority – to become a sustained political movement – and walkouts / rallies / marches are part of that effort.

      My responsibility as a father is to do everything possible to raise my children in a safe environment. The status quo isn’t working – doing nothing isn’t an option – unless you believe there isn’t a problem (and from your comment you point out all kinds of problems with the status quo).

      Here is a quote from the Washington Post article you linked to: “Gun violence is a crisis in the United States, especially for children, and a huge number — one that needs no exaggeration — have been affected by school shootings. An ongoing Washington Post analysis has found that more than 150,000 students attending at least 170 primary or secondary schools have experienced a shooting on campus since the Columbine High School massacre in 1999. That figure, which comes from a review of online archives, state and federal enrollment figures and news stories, is a conservative calculation and does not include dozens of suicides, accidents and after-school assaults that have also exposed youths to gunfire.” (and I’ve tweaked “18” to “multiple” in the article)

      Given the extraordinary severity of gun violence in the US it is inspiring that students want to do something. And as my daughter’s statement makes clear students can choose to participate – or not participate – as they see fit.

      And from Dick’s CEO – more evidence that student protests are not a “waste of time”: “We have tremendous respect and admiration for the students organizing and making their voices heard regarding gun violence in schools and elsewhere in our country. We have heard you. The nation has heard you. We support and respect the Second Amendment, and we recognize and appreciate that the vast majority of gun owners in this country are responsible, law-abiding citizens. But we have to help solve the problem that’s in front of us. Gun violence is an epidemic that’s taking the lives of too many people, including the brightest hope for the future of America – our kids.” (source: Dick’s CEO Edward Stack media statement)

      What are you planning to do to help solve this crisis (other than comment on a blog post?)

    • Evelyn Morehead permalink
      February 28, 2018 4:16 pm

      Hi. Thank you for your comment.

      Everything I said in my speech was fact-checked beforehand. There have not been 18 school shootings this year, but there have been 18 incidents of gunfire on campuses this year. This is what was stated in my speech and here is a link to the article I fact-checked with:

      This walkout is student-run and student-thought. This walkout is for students who want their voices to be heard and are fed up with the commonplace of school shootings. Just today, shots were fired on the Dalton High School campus. We as students will not stand for shootings becoming normalized, which is why we are making our demands loud and clear.

      Today in school we staged a lockdown drill and talked about what we would do in the case of an emergency. We are prepared and we are educated on what to do if a shooter came on campus. However, just because we are prepared, does not mean that we have to become complacent. I am excited that so many students want to demand change and do something about the issues at hand. This walkout is bringing students together and sparking conversations on what we can do as students to bring change to this country.

      Already from the Florida students speaking out, pressures are being put on companies and politicians who accept money from the NRA. Real change comes from speaking up and protesting.

      As I said in my speech, no student will be pressured into walking out. This is a personal choice and any decision will be respected.

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