Midlo’s Silence Speaks Louder Than Words

2019 Day of Silence


Day of Silence participants Diana Leasburg, Nour Goulmamine and Imke Davis hold up handmade posters explaining to take notecards and stickers.

Every year, the GLSEN (Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network) hosts The Day of Silence, an annual student-led day of action, during which students take a vow of silence for the entire school day to spread awareness of discrimination towards the LGBT community, represent the silencing of LGBT students, and commemorate those in the community who have passed due to bullying or assault. This year, the Day of Silence took place on Friday, April 12th. For the third year in a row, Midlothian High’s Gender and Sexuality Alliance organized their own commemoration of The Day of Silence. GSA officers and club members stationed themselves at the front and rear entrances of the school, holding hand-made signs encouraging students to take a rainbow sticker as well as a note card explaining the Day of Silence.

Students who chose to participate in a vow of silence on Friday wore rainbow flag stickers to signify their participation and held notec ards that read, “Please understand my reasons for not speaking today. I am participating in The Day of Silence, a national youth movement protesting the silence faced by lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people and their allies. My deliberate silence echoes that silence, which is caused by harassment, prejudice, and discrimination. I believe that ending the silence is the first step toward fighting these injustices. Think about the voices you are not hearing today. What are you going to do to end the silence?”

Emily Link, President of Midlo’s Gender and Sexuality Alliance, explained the importance of this event: “We need to bring awareness to the discrimination our community faces. Sometimes silence is louder than words.” Participant Marisa Ruotolo, donning a rainbow pride flag on her shirt, remarked, “It was pretty nice seeing my teachers wear Pride stickers. I felt a lot of support from staff.”

Students who struggle with harassment or bullying in school should tell a trusted adult, such as a teacher or a counselor, or contact The Crisis Text Line by texting HOME to 741-741. The Trevor Project is a 24 hour suicide/crisis hotline specifically for LGBT students, which can be reached at: 866-488-7386.