Three cheers for Ashley; boos for school administration
Letter to the Editor, reprinted from Hollis Brookline Journal, November 23, 2001
To the Editor.
Ashley Irvine, a student at Hollis/Brookline Cooperative High School, had the initiative to start a student unit of Amnesty International. With the destruction of the New York World Trade Center and the retaliatory bombing of Afghanistan, Ashley had the resoluteness to separate herself from the pack and protest the mass bombing of Afghanistan and many innocent civilians. The high school administration refused to allow her to post a notice on the school bulletin board to announce a gathering at the Nashua City Hall to protest the bombing (note Nashua gave her permission to hold the gathering). She was told by the principal that the school was a unit of the government and therefore they could not permit posting of a notice for a protest meeting for peace. I was one of four people attending the gathering. I was impressed with Ashley's courage and persistence to try and do her bit to stop the bombing and save innocent lives.
Moreover, the Hollis school administration demonstrated a lack of judgment. Schools are supposed to encourage independent thinking, individual initiative and all those characteristics that help youth to become constructive members of a democratic society. Unfortunately, our school administration seems to be against independent thought and prefers non-controversial togetherness. Cheers for Ashley and jeers for the school administration.