By Kayla Baggerly
Our school is a great school that has been continually getting better since it’s opening. However, like all great things, there is always room for improvement. I asked several students in the school about what issues could be focused on to make the school an even better place. Among some of the issues were student population, parking, (which I can attest to, being one who always ends up searching for parking in each lot and eventually, hanging my head low, end up in the back of the football field parking lot.) and the top 3 issues were ones that could be grouped into one category – not supporting each other.
There were several votes towards gossip, bullying, judging, and not accepting each other. They all stem from the same area and only create the same feelings- contention, loneliness, and frustration. This issue is one that can be fixed from ourselves. As students, we probably can’t go out there and build a new parking lot, or provide funding for one, but we can fix this inner problem.
There’s this breed of prejudice that we have, which is the attitude of “if you’re not like us, then I won’t talk to you.” People push others away because they’re different, but we are all different in our own way. As Audrey Kristensen said when polled, “When we categorize between an ‘us’ group and a ‘them’, group there is more contention and the school community environment as a whole is threatened. It’s not strong and then the good of the school is threatened, when we look out for ourselves.” Removing this prejudice would remove these issues that come from it. With more open minds, the bullying, judging, and gossip would stop. We would try to see people more than the expression they choose to keep plastered on their faces and the clothes they wear, but who they are inside. We would see what makes them unique, and perhaps make friendships with people we hadn’t thought we would.
If there’s any cause to be part of, it’s this; embracing diversity. We must fight this discrimination based on differences. On the outside, we are all diverse, but on the inside we all have this common core, we are all the same thing–human. There is no “type” of human that’s better than the others, there’s no certain hairstyle or shoes that makes this. So why should we act like there’s some humans that are better than others, some that are “worthy” of our presence and others who aren’t?
We’ve all felt this discrimination, its confusion and pain, and we’ve seen it divide us among our school. So why let it continue, when we see it and what it does? Why not come together and embrace the things that make use unique and see others from different perspectives? This is our chance to recognize it and make our school better. Everyone wants to make a change, but not everyone wants to take the steps to make that happen. Let’s be the ones who try. The ones who smile, the ones who are polite to all, the ones who genuinely try to learn about others. The ones who make the difference. It all starts here.