Apathetic is pathetic

At 10 a.m. on Wednesday, students across the country were given a choice. Most students were choosing between actively walking out to join the movement against gun violence or staying in class, but at Jones, non-participation was not an option.

By making all students leave classrooms during second period, the administration forced a choice on the student body: Polk Street or the gym. For many Jones students, this choice was between two ideological sides of the gun debate, but some students chose a third option: apathy. Especially at a school as left-leaning as Jones, I appreciate the courage it takes to stand up for beliefs that oppose the majority. While I am in full support of gun regulation, I respect the views of those who aren’t and the statement they made by spending second period in the gym. What I don’t respect is the choice of students to be apathetic. In my mind, the student body at Jones is an incredibly socially aware and involved group of young people, a group I’ve been proud to be a part of for the past almost four years. This is why I was even more surprised and disappointed when I saw so much indifference when it came to the march.

On issues like these, I cannot understand the students who chose not to participate in the walk out because it was “too cold” or they just didn’t care about the issue at hand. In response to the former, is your desire to affect change truly so superficial that you can’t be bothered to endure 42 degrees for an hour? Moreover, it’s incredibly disrespectful that the temperature is what prevented you from honoring the 17 lives that were lost in the Parkland shooting.

In response to the latter, if you truly don’t have an opinion or care about this issue, the only conclusion I’m able to reach is that you’re uninformed. When there’s an average of one school shooting every week, how could you feel disconnected from this issue? More than that, when you have peers who have been affected by gun violence, how can you claim to be unaffected?

As students between the ages of 14 and 18, it won’t be long before we’re the ones with authority. Democrat or Republican, pro or anti-gun, you have to take a stand for the future you want to see. Apathy isn’t cool.