Their silence is deafening. Silence is one of the hardest arguments to refute and is one of the ways students have spread awareness about the effects of the bullying and harassment of LGBTQ+ students. The national Day of Silence has taken place on the third Friday of April every year since 1996. On this day, students take a day-long vow of silence to symbolically represent the silence of LGBTQ+ students who have committed suicide due to bullying.
“I was really confused about why she wasn’t talking and why she had tape on her mouth. I thought it was just a joke and made fun of her until the upperclassmen told me what it was about. I had never heard of the day and it would have been cool to see posters and stuff for it,” said Nevaeh Valdez, 9, said
Orange Glen has been participating in this event since 2002. The Gay-Straight Alliance (GSA) club on campus has promoted the day every year by providing face paint on the day before school, putting up posters with information about the day, and holding an annual march at lunch where the students taking part in the Day of Silence hold posters to silently show their support for the LGBTQ+ community. This year was different, though, as GSA did not advertise the day so students not in the club did not know it was happening. Due to this, only 2 students participated this year. The unfavorable result was also a result of the Associated Student Body (ASB) making the day senior ditch day since seniors are more knowledgeable about the day and would have been more likely to participate. This outcome was devastating because not only did the members of GSA not participate themselves, many students didn’t know about the significance of the day.
“I would have participated, but I didn’t know it was today. I’ve been waiting for the advertisements from GSA like they do every year because I actually wanted to learn more about the day and do more than just participate since I don’t know much about it other than it’s to support the LGBTQ community. I’m really disappointed that I missed the day,” Mya Feiga, 11, said.