Tuesday, September 16, 2014
   
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Snowflake solidarity

GHS seniors create, send art to Sandy Hook students, staff

Students in Tom Scott’s government classes were shocked and saddened when they learned about the 20-year-old gunman who shot school children, teachers and administrators in Newtown, CT, nearly a month ago.

“I was confused about why someone would do that,” said Nikki Hines. “They’re just kids.”

As a way of reaching out, Scott’s two senior American government classes cut out and sent snowflakes to greet students and employees when they returned to school last week.

Scott found out about the project on the Internet.

In a letter student Kaylee Beyea wrote, that accompanied the snowflakes, she said the senior class at GHS extends “our sincerest sympathy to everyone who has been touched by this needless tragedy.”

“As members of a K-12 school, we see young children passing through the halls everyday,” Beyea wrote. “When we see them, it is difficult to imagine what your community is going through.”

Beyea said each snowflake is unique work of God’s creation, just as each child and staff member who lost their lives were a unique creation.

The letter ended with scripture from Matthew 5:4: “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.”

On Dec. 21, before District 20 students were dismissed for the holiday break, they observed a moment of silence at 9:30 a.m.

The victims’ names were read and a bell was rung after each name was announced.

Rebecca Stevens said the tragedy reminded her of the shooting at Columbine High School more than 13 years ago.

Mackinzie Ostendorf said she felt for the families of the victims.

“I don’t know what it’d be like to lose a kid,” she said.

No matter how much gun control is enforced, Bailey Gibbens said firearms can be obtained.

Heidi Teahon agreed, noting that there’s always going to be a way to get into schools.

Cody Cooper said he thinks the shooting shows a lack of morals.

“We’ve gone too long accepting things that should be considered wrong, like promoting violence with video games,” Cooper said. “Discipline is also less than what it used to be.”

He added that society is also too preoccupied with “what we want to do” and doesn’t notice what’s going on around them such as people with mental illness or those hurting in other ways.

“And we try to use prescription drugs to solve everything,” he said.

In addition, Gibbens said kids need positive role models who participate in their lives and not a parent who drinks to excess every night.

“You have to show them that you love them,” she said.

Cooper thinks random acts of kindness help, such as carrying someone’s groceries.

“It’s the small things that matter,” he said. “Helping out when someone doesn’t expect it creates a huge chain of positive impact in society.”

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