Student reflects on importance of storytelling in history

Oct 2 • Opinion • 190

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My favorite part about doing the Features sections of the paper are the “Today in Gannon History” photos.
Every Friday I get to visit the archives and work with the lovely ladies there to find photos that match the issue that week.
This week especially with the school shooting photos, it occurs to me now more than ever that history is such an important aspect of everything we do.
It’s a way to hold us responsible for our actions and help us do better in the future.
In high school I had a history teacher who turned around the way I learned history by telling it like a story.
The storytelling is another reason why I love it so much because as a journalist, I am continuing that story.
Former Washington Post President Philip Graham said journalism is “the first rough draft of history” and that is something that has always stuck with me.
This issue is really crucial to history, including the women’s suffrage events and the school shooting article.
As journalists, we owe it to people to give them information they need to know.
In this case, it is celebrating the progress we have made so far, while still holding people accountable for the ongoing complications our country faces every day.
It is fun to see the old outfits and parts of history that we hear about, but on the other hand, it is also a window into the past, allowing us to connect with past generations.
The difficulties we experience today can often be related back to a past event.
That being said, it can be painful to reflect on the past sometimes, but it is the only way to make progress.
It is never enjoyable to talk about a school shooting, but the fact that they are still occurring is not OK.
Since I came up with the idea for the story after seeing the Sandy Hook Promise video, there has already been another school shooting.
I won’t talk about politics or take your guns away, but something needs to change if this has been happening for almost 50 years now.
The best way to make a change is to be educated on a topic, and it is detrimental to our society when people do not pay attention to the world around them and then expect it to change.
Upon talking with other students, I found that the student body was outraged by the Sandy Hook Promise video. Multiple people told me they hoped for media to draw more attention to the injustices we are facing and that the media should use their platform to advocate for those who are not fortunate enough to have a place to speak out.
History is inescapable and if there is a problem with the time you are living through, it is your responsibility to do something about it.
Journalists may have the duty to inform the public, but it is about what they do in turn with that information that makes a difference.
I look forward to continuing my career as a journalist, and hope to inspire others the same way my high school did.

CHLOE FORBES

forbes004@knights.gannon.edu

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