By Leila Barnes and Bri Taylor
In the days following the election of Donald Trump, Americans have been reacting to this in various ways. Some have been celebrating and some have been at home sitting in their sorrows. There have been anti-Trump riots and protests throughout the country. Even other countries are afraid for America after seeing the results of the presidential election.
Students at Walled Lake Central decided to take action. In the days immediately after the election, there were posts on Snapchat about a peaceful walkout on November 11. Many students were convinced to join in. When Friday came, It was rumored that the walkout was approved by the administration but then, around nine in the morning, senior Dasha Abbas posted on Twitter saying “I guess Mr. Morgan would rather we just say a message over the PA….walkout canceled for now, could be rescheduled to another time.”
Later that morning, Abbas and senior Brea Hayes made an announcement to the whole school with Principal Chuck Morgan. Morgan started out saying how he met with the two students to send a positive message about unity, love, and acceptance. He then went on to explain that local social justice leader Dr. Jay Marks of Oakland Schools was consulted about the concerns raised by members of Central’s gender equality group, African-American association, social justice committee, and the Gay Straight Alliance relative to the negative messages and violence that have been broadcasted in the media regarding the presidential election.
Hayes then said that Central will not be divided as a committee and that if you are feeling violated, frustrated, or depressed, that you are not alone. That the administrators are here for you and that there will be others who are willing to help you get through the emotional pain. Abbas talked about how no matter what is in the media today, that we must progress in our support and love. She talked about how the administrator is going to have an ongoing dialogue over time to address the issue. Morgan said that he will give more information on the whole process.
Morgan later explained further to The Call why he canceled the walk out. “I don’t want to make this a one day issue. We should address the problem throughout the whole school year.” He also said that it was good for the students to be able to express their opinions and creativity. He wants to spread love, unity, and acceptance for people who felt frustrated or depressed. In this interview, he made the topic more on making this a broad concept instead of focusing on the election. Although he did address the feelings of those who were affected by the election, he worked towards making this a broad social justice issue.
Abbas was ultimately satisfied with the school’s response. “We need to develop this more to make sure nothing is violent and that both groups of people feel safe in our community.” If there is a walkout or any other type of peaceful protest, Morgan will let all of us know when it is and that we will all be safe and still be able to use our voices.”