Editor-in-Chief makes last stand

Grace Marion, Editor-in-Chief

Ironically, I will not be at graduation as you read this. The only graduation I will not attend in these four years is my own. The only June issue of the newspaper I will not be distributing is my last.

This is a protest.

If it were in this school’s nature to admit it’s mistakes I would accept that. But it is not, and I am going to be thousands of miles away as you read this because of that.

I will not honor a school that supports the oppression of free speech, of LGBTQ+ rights, and of the victims of sexual assault and harassment. I will not allow a school that regularly censors its student writers, outs LGBTQ+ students to their families, and hides the records of sexual misconduct within its walls claim me or any of my successes. For those of you who know me, or the victims of these actions, I am sure it is clear to you why I am angry. But, for those of you who do not, I will explain.

Dozens of articles have been cut from the newspaper without reason. Basketball coverage, New Year’s resolutions, investigative pieces, anything you could think of has been subject to prior restraint. Our staff has been repeatedly berated for writing these pieces by administration.

One newspaper member was outed to his family as homosexual by Neshaminy administration my freshman year. Another as transgender the same year, and another as bisexual the year after. All for articles that Neshaminy didn’t like.

My father once received a call saying that I would be in physical danger should I publish a certain piece. I was later pulled out of class for about an hour to sit in a room full of adults and have our principal scream at me about how school papers do not have the rights that the constitution guarantees us all. This wasn’t even the first time that I had gotten that speech.

This month I worked on a piece about the mishandling of sexual misconduct complaints at Neshaminy. If that piece doesn’t appear here, it will be in the Courier Times. Or the Intelligencer. If I have to, it will be on facebook and printed out on hundreds of flyers and put in every mailbox in the school district.

Now, I am trying to come up with what I should write in the yearbooks of friends I might never see again. I am mad as hell, but still sad for the future that I know many of my friends will face in their next few years as newspaper members or even just students at Neshaminy.