Students at Becker College Say “Enough is Enough” to Violence
This year marked the second year that Becker has participated in the nationwide Enough is Enough campaign to end societal violence. The weeklong events commenced on Wednesday April 13, 2011 with “These Hands Don’t Hurt.” Students, faculty, and staff participated by putting a handprint on a canvas promising not to use their hands to commit violence, black and white ribbons were also handed out. A great number of staff and faculty stopped by and commended our efforts and thanked us for taking part in such a great campaign.
“Rally for Respect” was the second event in the campaign; it took place on Thursday. Students, staff, and faculty gathered at the Alumni Field at 8 pm and sat on the turf field and shared stories of how violence has affected their lives. President Johnson shared his story of how he lost his best friend to violence and that “there are other ways to resolve conflict without violence.” President Johnson’s words were heartfelt and very personal. He stressed that “Conflict may arise, but Enough is Enough.”
Jean Blackmer, Director of Student Activities, read a letter from Will Smith’s mother. Will was a Becker College transfer student who began attending Becker in the fall of 2008. He was stabbed at an off campus party that year, and a few hours later he lost his life; to this day, no arrests have been made. A great number of students stood up and shared their stories as to how violence has affected their lives.
The SGA and Diversity Alliance sponsored the “Day of Silence to End Violence” on Friday. Students from both campuses participated by wearing a pin that said, “Ask Me Why I’m Not Talking” and handed out business cards to anyone who asked and wanted to know more about what the Day of Silence represents. For me, this was the most meaningful event. Going through the day without talking made me realize how many individuals go through their entire lives not speaking out about violence because they’re afraid. At 4:00 pm on Friday, students who participated gathered at either the Quad in Worcester or the Grove in Leicester to break the silence of violence by screaming.
The weeklong events continued on Monday with a performance of “The Yellow Dress,” a one-woman play based on stories of dating violence. The play was very powerful for everyone who attended. The woman’s relationship began as fun and loving but ended deadly. After the show, the actress who played Anna explained to the students that this happens everywhere, and we must keep our eyes open. She cautioned that if we ever find ourselves in such situations we must get out of that relationship.
We can end violence, one day at a time!
-Esmeralda Taraj, Staff Writer