We deserve a voice too

Conducting+an+interview+with+various+news+outlets%2C+senior+Darya+Temeenii+shares+her+views+after+the+RRHS+walk+out.RRHS+had+the+most+students+out+of+any+LCPS+to+walk+out+for+the+protest+with+over+100+students+joining+in+on+the+event.+
Conducting an interview with various news outlets, senior Darya Temeenii shares her views after the RRHS walk out.RRHS had the most students out of any LCPS to walk out for the protest with over 100 students joining in on the event.

Conducting an interview with various news outlets, senior Darya Temeenii shares her views after the RRHS walk out.RRHS had the most students out of any LCPS to walk out for the protest with over 100 students joining in on the event.

Sneha Misra

Sneha Misra

Conducting an interview with various news outlets, senior Darya Temeenii shares her views after the RRHS walk out.RRHS had the most students out of any LCPS to walk out for the protest with over 100 students joining in on the event.

Jordan Hudson, Student Life Editor

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On Friday, Feb. 10 at 2:59 p.m., 200 RRHS students walked out of school and into the football stadium. The students did this without the approval of RRHS or LCPS. The students walked out in an inspired protest against Donald Trump and his executive order to ban several countries with majority Muslim populations. Many students feel that the ban is unnecessary at best, and at worst outright prejudice. In addition, other students were protesting Trump’s pick of Betsy Devos for United States Secretary of Education.

Trump’s ban is a part of his plan to prevent terrorism in the United States and its territories. The ban prevented people in several counties in the middle east from being granted entry into the US. After the controversial ban was enacted it was eventually deemed unconstitutional by the Justice Department, and has since failed to gain an appeal. However, many people are concerned that Trump will continue to try and enact a new executive order or get his last one appealed.

Trump’s other heavily criticized decision was his nomination of Betsy Devos for the US Secretary of State. Devos is a controversial pick as many feel that she doesn’t have the political experience to hold such an important position. In fact, the confirmation for Devos was initially stuck at a tie, with Mike Pence casting the tie breaking vote in favor of Devos’ confirmation.

The protest was organized by several upperclassmen at RRHS and happened in conjunction with several other protests around LCPS schools. Among these students was senior Darya Temeemi, and Juniors Sneha Misra, Ameera Naser, Rajul Vadera, Shiril Yedhara and Husna Ateeqi.These girls felt that they had to participate, and while they had vastly different reasons, they still came together to organize the event.

Sneha was credited as being one of the main organizers of the protest, and felt that it was important to represent the voices of others around the world.

 

“In one of my classes we were studying social injustice, so I was inspired, even if [the Muslim ban] didn’t mean anything personally to me,” Misra said. “If I have a voice that can advocate for others then why not use it.” Misra’s main problem was with Betsy Devos and her history within the field.

“She doesn’t have any of the qualifications, she’s privileged, her kids went to college, everything was paid for she never took out a loan she never went to public school, so how can she relate to our problems” Misra said.

For Naser the protest was much more personal.

“My uncle recently went back because my grandmother has a heart problem and she needed to come back to the US for surgery and she’s a citizen,” Naser said. “Because we’re Palestinian, even though were not part of the seven [seven countries were banned], he doesn’t want her to come through, so she missed her surgery and she’s in critical condition right now. It was important for her to come and get it, because overseas they don’t have the type of medical equipment available,” Naser said.

Temeemi wanted to use her voice to speak out for others as she had done numerous times before. “I’ve spoken before at another protest, and it was on twitter and I got a lot of favorites and retweets, so I think they just wanted someone to speak,” Temeemi said. Temeemi also has loads of experience that she was able to share with the other girls. “I’m very active in speaking out for Muslim rights and the rights of other minorities,” Temeemi said.

Vadera just couldn’t understand the reason for the ban and wanted to help fight against it.

“It really hurts me that in our country that this is even going on, it’s the twenty first century and you would think that we’re past all this,” Vadera said. “And the only way for us to get our voices heard is to do something drastic like this.” As for Yedhara, she just wanted to share her viewpoints on the issue and speak for those who couldn’t.

“I think that’s it’s important that we raise our voices, especially for something that’s so important and something that’s going to affect us as a generation,” Yedhara said.

These girls risked a lot in order to organize this event, and faced numerous challenges.

“The challenges were actually getting the group of people because the consequences were obviously on the table, that was always a possibility, so it was really hard to get people on board to it,” Vadera said.

Despite this they still organized a school wide event that was larger than any other in Loudoun county. They brought together students from multiple backgrounds and beliefs to protest something they knew was truly wrong.

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