PHS hosts Blackout Bullying Day

By CONNIE NOLEN / Community Columnist

“Please remind your students to take a stand against bullying by wearing a solid black shirt tomorrow,” said Spanish teacher and Peer Helper adviser Missy Copes in her announcement of Blackout Bullying Day to the PHS faculty.

The human ear loves alliteration so choosing black to “Blackout Bullying” captures attention.

We study the concept of black in the design component of Literary Magazine. Adobe InDesign not only has black, but also registration—which is a deeper black than black. Black is actually all of the colors layered together, while registration is all of the colors including black—which creates an even darker shade.

Knowing that black is all colors united gives an entirely new slant to “Blackout Bullying.”

“As I walked around the halls today, many kids had on black T-shirts. It was encouraging to see that so many students are aware of bullying and its effects,” said Peer Helper Co-President Molly Stephens.

Peer Helper Adviser Missy Copes traces her interest in bullying and exclusion back to her graduate coursework at the University of Montevallo.

“Seeing people excluded has always troubled me so I did research on bullying and exclusion,” said Copes. “As a teacher, one of my top priorities is making every student feel special and important no matter what their race, gender, economic or social status may be. God created all of us and commands us to love one another—no exceptions.”

Because black is actually all colors layered together, the color embodies unity.

“I felt that the student body was more unified today because everyone was participating in the blackout bullying activities,” said Peer Helper Gracie Vinson.

A large percentage of the PHS student body consists of writers, designers, performers and visual artists who value all things fresh, unique and real. People who are different are often bullies’ targets.

Perhaps the artistic appreciation that thrives in the Pelham community allows us to value inclusion over exclusion and to realize that we are stronger when we stand united as a community of kindness.