• September 17Varsity Football vs Saugus @ GHS *Friday 10/5 7:00pm*

  • September 17Varsity Field Hockey vs Malden @ GHS *Monday 10/1 7:00pm*

  • September 17Boys and Girls Varsity Cross Country vs Winthrop @ Stage Fort Park *Wednesday 10/3 4:30pm*

  • September 17Varsity Golf vs Somerville @ Bass Rocks *Tuesday 10/2 4:00pm*

  • September 17Boys Varsity Soccer @ Lynn Classical *Thursday 10/4 5:30pm*

  • September 17Girls Varsity Soccer @ Saugus *Tuesday 10/2 4:00pm*

Reflection: I marched for our lives in D.C.

GHS+students+Maria+Kotob+and+Sarah+Whitmore+hold+homemade+signs+at+the+March+for+Our+Lives+in+Washington+D.C.
GHS students Maria Kotob and Sarah Whitmore hold homemade signs at the March for Our Lives in Washington D.C.

GHS students Maria Kotob and Sarah Whitmore hold homemade signs at the March for Our Lives in Washington D.C.

James Whitmore

James Whitmore

GHS students Maria Kotob and Sarah Whitmore hold homemade signs at the March for Our Lives in Washington D.C.

SARAH WHITMORE, Staff Writer

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On March 24th, I took part in the revolutionary beginning of progress and reform for our country’s government and morals. As a senior in high school looking towards a career in Political Science, I naturally jumped on the opportunity to participate in the March for Our Lives rally in the nation’s capital. Not only did this event align with my moral values, but my vision for our country moving forward. I wanted to be a part of this progress, even if it was in a small way.

I hopped on the plane with two of my aunts and my friend Maria at the crack of dawn on Saturday morning, took the train into DC, met up with my dad, and piled onto the subway to the Capitol Building. Emerging from the subway, the spirit of democracy filled the air around us. Everywhere we looked there was a sign being held, a chant being yelled, and empowering music being played. It was crowded, the environment calm yet filled with passion.

Arriving two hours early, we decided to get coffee to fuel up for the day ahead. When we returned, the crowd had doubled. Washington D.C. had come alive. What was once a march had become a rally, as the expected number of participants rose, making a permit to march unattainable.

Throughout the day, it was hard to comprehend that these amazing human beings who spoke to a crowd of nearly one-million people were my age. No less than a month earlier, they were going about their lives like any other American student.

Even more incomprehensible, was the reason we were all there. Students and staff, just like those that surround me everyday, were stripped of the opportunity that life encompasses. It was scary and depressing to think about, but today the reality of it all flooded before me as the students spoke of their experience and loss right in front of my eyes. It all became so real.

In the age of digital media, we are constantly bombarded with new information. For me this is exceedingly true, and Valentine’s Day was no different. On February 14th, I got an alert on my phone, after having just returned home from school, that a high school shooting had taken place in Parkland, Florida.

At the time, I breathed deeply and let it sift through my mind. As a twenty-first century student this has become an oppressive norm in the media. Yet, little did I know, at the time, that the shooting was actually a massacre in which seventeen people would lose their lives or how far it would carry.

Eloquently, the students of Marjory Douglas High School rose from the heartache to demand and ignite change like never before. I began seeing them on the news, on my Youtube feeds, and at Gloucester High School, as we took on the nationwide school walkout in their support. Tears welled in my eyes as Caleb Perry and Caroline Enos read off the names of the students lost at the hands of a malicious device. This should not be our reality.

Last Saturday, in the reality of it all, I felt the strength of the movement around me, and more than ever I knew, against all odds, the time for change was now and that we are the change.

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About the Photographer
Sarah Whitmore, Staff Writer

Sarah Whitmore is a senior at Gloucester High School and a member of the cross country team. She is also a member of the National Honor Society, Treasurer of the GHS Interact Club, Member of the Environmental Club and Human Rights Club. In her free time, she likes to go out to eat with her friends, travel, workout, and volunteer with the House of Peace in Ipswich. This is Sarah’s first year as a staff writer for The Gillnetter.

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3 Comments

3 Responses to “Reflection: I marched for our lives in D.C.”

  1. Cody Clifford on April 2nd, 2018 9:03 pm

    Slow news month? This is like the fifth story the Gillnetter has posted about events surrounding the shooting. I get it – this is a left-leaning website, but it’d be appreciated if we could move on to something other than this.

  2. Cody Clifford on April 2nd, 2018 9:20 pm

    I just believe there should be less of a bias in our school newspaper. National news networks – on both sides – have enough as it is.

  3. Gianna Cabral on April 3rd, 2018 1:40 pm

    Hi Cody, thank you for your feedback. As a newspaper, our staff writers are allowed to speak their minds in the opinion section, within reason, because the opinions we run do not reflect the beliefs of the paper (please see our about section for more information).

    Gun violence is a huge issue going on in the world right now, so people have a lot to say. We have covered this ongoing issue not because the paper is passionate about it, but because GHS students have shown an interest and actively spoken up about it. We would not be doing our duty as a news outlet if we did not cover current events that are relevant to the community.

    If you have an opinion that you feel hasn’t been addressed in the editorial section, please submit something and we will run it happily. We have invited you to contribute many times, and await your submission.

    We want to present every perspective, but we can’t if you only post your opinion in the comments section.

    -Editorial Staff

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Reflection: I marched for our lives in D.C.