Silence is violence

Posted: Wednesday, September 25, 2002

I read with interest Ms. O'Malley's article regarding the JDHS Day of Silence and positions taken by School Board candidates regarding the event,

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Candidates split over 'day of silence'

one which recognizes the silence and discrimination experienced by high school students who identify themselves as gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender (GLBT). I walked with the students, parents, faculty and friends at the Day of Silence in Juneau last April. It was a very positive experience for me and all involved. I struggle to imagine why anybody would not support such a community exercise, exactly as it exists.

While I was a high school student in Alaska 20 years ago there were frequent slurs against Native Alaskan and GLBT students. We didn't do anything about it then as a student body or as a community. I don't want another generation of Alaska high school students growing up afraid to be who they are.

Silence is violence. Thank you to Day of Silence organizers and to school board candidates Carl Brodersen, Bob Van Slyke, Jeremy Kerr, Will Muldoon and Louise Cornwall, who told Ms. O'Malley they would support Day of Silence, if elected. Candidates Julie Morris, Steve Kikendall and Bonn Trinidad, all of whom failed to offer unconditional support for Day of Silence, should reevaluate their candidacies for school board. See you at Day of Silence 2003.

Jay Stange

Juneau



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