Reflections on Parkland: Change is the new normal

    Having covered the gun-control walkouts in March I was one of many student journalists who eagerly piled into Media Arts Center room 105 Wednesday afternoon for a video interview with Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student reporters. Their coverage of the tragic Valentine’s Day shooting gained national attention and the wake of the MSD student body’s activism reached all of us in the form of walkouts and marches. The Paly Voice hosted the call, which was streamed through Periscope, while representatives from other Palo Alto High School publications attended. These are the things that I learned from that conversation.

    Could the Parkland school shooting be the final straw?

    The response to the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, where a disturbed man murdered 17 people, feels different. This surge in student-led activism is something new; something that could mark the end of the cynical passivity that has become the mindset of so many, and should serve as a call to action.

    In light of the Parkland shooting

    In the United States you are as likely to be killed by a gun as you are to be killed in a car accident. In South Korea, you are just as likely to be killed by a gun as being crushed between two objects. In Japan, the comparison is made with being killed by lightning and in New Zealand, with falling off of a ladder, according to the New York Times.

    An alternating schedule would harm extracurriculars

    Recently, the Innovative Schedule Committee (ISC)—a collaborative group consisting of both students and staff—announced that it had narrowed its long search for a new schedule system and is strongly considering a certain type: one that has no C-days. Though the elimination of C-days may be cause for celebration for many students, we must not ignore the potential implications of switching to an alternating-type schedule.
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