by Nataly Arzate
Twin day, jersey, hats, and wearing your costume.
Is that all there is to Red Ribbon Week? Red ribbon week is a drug and violence prevention awareness campaign observed annually in October in the United States. Is it just an activity that students participate in and have no knowledge of its history?
“No one knows the history of it and it’s upsetting,” Esau, a Samueli parent said.
Students, parents, and staff normally participate in red ribbon week across schools and offices. They decorate classrooms and participate in activities to raise awareness for red ribbon week, but do people know the history of red ribbon week?
What is red ribbon week? Red ribbon week started with a response to the murder of DEA Agent Enrique Camarena. Angered parents and youth in communities across the country began wearing Red Ribbons as a symbol of their commitment to raise awareness of the killing and destruction caused by drugs or alcohol in America. In 1988, NFP sponsored the first National Red Ribbon Celebration and traveled worldwide.
“It sends a message to people telling them that they care about that, even if some people don’t care,” Brandon Palma, freshmen at Samueli, said.
Why is red ribbon week important? Red ribbon week is a symbol of violence and drug abuse and reminds us of what had happened to Agent Enrique Camarena when undercover trying to stop drug smugglers.
“It tells people with those problems that there are people there to help,” Brandon Palma, freshmen at Samueli, said.
“It’s important because it’s to inform people about how drugs are bad,” Nathaniel Zamudio, freshmen at Samueli, said.
Normally others would agree that Red ribbon week is important because it informs people of the bad history drugs have.
Even though it’s made to motivate others to not do drugs, why is it that some people do end up doing drugs?
“Cause some people believe it will never affect them,” Nathaniel said, “One can say I’m not going to do drugs but one day decides to not listen to what they were taught in the past. Once you try it, it’s hard to leave it.”
Meaning that the sense of feeling able to withstand the addiction leads to sometimes one doing drugs, and once it’s done it’s hard to go back.
“In this case drugs and alcohol are things that trap you and it’s recommended to not try them because the addiction is so strong,” Luz a Samueli parent said, “Temptation is a big part because we all want to be accepted and it seems as though people who are cool are the ones who use drugs.”
Temptation and peer pressure also play a big role when it comes to those taking drugs and causes people to forget or ignore what they were taught.
There are two viewpoints when it comes to Red ribbon week. It’s either seeing it as a waste of time or seeing as something important for the community.
“I really like the idea, it is necessary even though others might not think the same way, it is a good way of showing unity between people and morals,” Brandon said.
“I think it’s good to have around because it shows that some people are aware of it and can teach others,” Nathaniel said.
Overall red ribbon week is a symbol to remember for those who lost their lives and for those trapped in a drug addiction.
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