To my fellow recent graduates of Green High School, As many of you already know, we have an important vote coming up Aug. 7.

Just two weeks after February's shooting that claimed the lives of seventeen students and staff in Parkland, Fla., the Green Board of Education - alongside law enforcement officials and school safety experts - held a public forum to answer Green residents' safety-related questions and to listen to their input on what actions they thought should be taken to keep our schools safe. The consensus was overwhelming: City of Green residents demanded upgrades to security, student resource officers in each school and increased attention towards mental health.

Our school board members promptly delivered. Shortly after the forum, they announced the proposal of a security levy that raises the necessary funds for four additional student resource officers (one in each building), two full-time CARE teams and that focus on family outreach, student mental health professionals in each building, and numerous internal improvements to bolster security - all of this for the modest monthly expense of a single cup of coffee to the average Green taxpayer. This levy - now known as Issue 1 - will appear on the ballot on Aug. 7.

The Green Board of Education has fulfilled its responsibility to the community; now it's time for us to fulfill ours by voting YES on Issue 1.

We are the generation that helplessly watched as school shootings became a full-scale epidemic over the course of our lifetimes. We are the generation that watched with disgust as state and federal elected officials and bureaucrats did nothing but engage in partisan bickering in the face of each and every mass school shooting. We are the generation that watched in utter shock as news broke of a school shooting right down the road at Jackson Middle School.

The time for watching is over.

We can't wait in the wings any longer hoping for career politicians in Washington, D.C., and Columbus to take action. On Aug. 7, we have the ability to enact real change within our own community. A YES vote is a vote for safer Green schools, for good local government and for our generation's vital role in shaping the community (and country) we live in for the decades to come.

That's why I’m asking you, my fellow Bulldog alumni, to vote YES on Issue 1.

In solidarity,
Denton A. Cohen,
GHS Class of 2018