Editorial: PEACE Week Opening Ceremony
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Monday was the opening ceremony for Mansfield’s annual PEACE Week. This year, the money that we fundraise throughout the week is going to senior Eric Romero’s father, Michael Romero, who is suffering from ALS. Student Council has spent weeks organizing PEACE Week and coordinating with the Romero family to ensure that we fundraise as much money for them as possible.
At the opening ceremony, Student Council decorated the gym with streamers, posters, and balloons, that they either made or paid for out of pocket. The Romero family even came and sat on the gym floor to watch. Throughout the opening ceremony the drill team performed, a video of the Romero’s situation was played, a few representatives from the student body participated in an ice bucket challenge, and another video about ALS was shown.
But the highlight of the ceremony was when two friends and family of the Romero family spoke about Michael’s diagnosis, the toll it has taken on him, and how he continues to stay positive. It would have been a perfect ceremony. Except it wasn’t.
Throughout the ceremony, students would not stop talking, even during the videos and when the Romero family spoke. It was disrespectful, both to the Romero family and to the students who had worked hard to organize the ceremony. This was not the best MHS has to offer, and it was extremely disappointing. What was even more disappointing was that there were teachers in the crowd who did nothing about it. We understand that by the time you are in high school you should know when to be quiet for a serious event, but teachers should take the initiative and tell their students to be quiet when they are being disrespectful. Not to mention, the ceremony was optional, so if students did not want to be there, they should not have come.
And it only got worse. As students were leaving after the ceremony was over, they crumpled up streamers and popped balloons. Members of one sports team even continued to mess with the balloons, after student council members told them to stop– all while their coach watched. The gym went from being a colorful expression of spirit to looking trashed. Student Council was planning on leaving up the decorations all week, so they would be up for the pep rallies later in the week. But now, the gym does not look nearly as good as StuCo had hoped.
Quite frankly, it was embarrassing. We are embarrassed that fellow students were acting this way in front of a family we were trying to support. We are embarrassed that students destroyed something their Student Council worked so hard to do for the school. And we are embarrassed that their poor behavior will be the most prominent memory many take from what was supposed to be a touching and beautiful event.
We are in high school. We are 14 to 18 years old, and we know how to act. Mansfield can do so much better, and we hope we prove that throughout the rest of the week.