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Taking a Stand

By Josh Hall, NAACP member at ETHS   

I take a stand on violence because I am sick and tired of being sick and tired of seeing our youth becoming statistics at the beginning of the third grade.

I take a stand on violence because I am tired of becoming a witness to my brothers and sisters being killed every day and placing their selves in harm’s way.

I take a stand on violence because I have had enough of seeing my fellow peers remain silent because their voices are not being heard.

I represent the NAACP, along with all of the ETHS students struggling with what we have fought and died over all these years, but most importantly I represent my community. Where ever I go I represent these things with a mindset that even alone I can make a difference, but together we can make the ground that houses all of this violence and hate that seeps into this soil shake… with the attitude that enough is enough. 

But most importantly I represent every soul that has been hurt because no one takes the time to hear them out … not allowing their voices to be heard where they have been silenced by others with this dangerous chant, “No snitching,” where tattling is frowned upon by teachers, parents and students alike.

I believe that violence is not acceptable in any form or situation because even in self-defense it can end up in a non-positive outcome … but because our ancestors have taught us to fight back if someone has done us wrong…we tend to misuse this teaching, we harm those who try so hard to place an end to the cycle that we are continuing.

Why We Can’t Wait

By Amanda Hoseman, NAACP member at ETHS   

Christel Castillo – committed suicide due to bullying

Aquan Lewis – found hung in a bathroom stall at Oakton Elementary School, reported as a suicide

Darrell Shannon Pickett – shot and killed

Derrion Albert – beaten to death

Omar Estrada – shot in the head

Angela Saporito – committed suicide

Julian Nava – stabbed and killed

Keith Tucker – shot and killed

David L. Branch – stabbed to death

Terry Pettigrew III – shot and killed

Marcus Davis – shot and killed in his car

Peter Ramon Lyons – reported as suicide

Ronald Walker – shot and killed due to mistaken identity

Dashaun Davy – stabbed and died

Lazarus Jones – kicked, beaten and hit in the head with a hammer, died

This is why we are here now. This is why we can’t wait.

It is the youth’s job to fix this, but we need your help, too.

For the youth, those who aren’t afraid to take a stand, help us help others.

Now, I’m asking you. What do we do now? ‘Cause we can’t wait.

Students Speak Out

At the onset of warm weather Mayor Elizabeth Tisdahl called upon social service organizations, City officials and faith-based congregations to help make this summer a safe one for youth.

Students in the Evanston Township High School branch of the NAACP have spoken out against the recent spate of violence, particularly against the shootings of young people by other young people. Some of these students attended the June 4 Safe Summer Summit. The speeches of  Amanda Hoseman and Josh Hall are reprinted here. Curfew Times …

The City’s curfew for kids under 17 is in effect from Sunday through Thursday from 10 p.m. until 6 a.m. and on Friday and Saturday nights from 11 p.m. until 6 a.m.