Imagine yourself here, 40 years ago

DKS editors

For two hours today, pretend you don’t own a cell phone.

Pretend you don’t have a Facebook account or a laptop

to access it. Then imagine you know family and friends

who are fighting a war halfway around the world. Imagine

your parents and other adults completely disagree with

you and your friends’ anti-war beliefs.

Life is difficult for any college student. You are in the middle of finding yourself, finding a partner, deciding if your major is right for you, living with your peers and

doing well in classes.

Now add to this the turmoil of 1970.

So today, don’t use your time off from class between noon and 2 p.m. living like a young person in this day and age, checking your e-mail and

texting your friends. Go down to the Commons. Sit in the field, next

to the bell, and listen to the speakers. Put yourself in history.

As students, we should not just have respect for the four killed — Allison

Krause, Jeffrey Miller, William Schroeder and Sandra Scheuer — we

should have respect for every young person who grew up in such an

era. It’s hard to imagine what these men and women went though,

but at the very least we can take the time the university has allowed

us and step away from our usual day-to-day distractions in order to

pay homage.

But even beyond today, one of the greatest lessons

we can take away from May 4 and remember in our everyday lives is

to appreciate every second that we have. When those four students

woke up that spring morning, they did not expect their parents would

be called later that day with tragic news. They also weren’t given a

chance to say goodbye or give their loved ones a last hug. Allison,

Jeffrey, William and Sandra had no intention on making that day at

Kent State the last day of their young lives.

Appreciate the ones you are with, and let them know. Every day that you have, work toward

peace in your life and the lives of others. We are a lucky generation

— we do not have to deal with young men being drafted into war

or a wide chasm in beliefs between our parents and ourselves. So

today, take two hours and sit very simply on the field next to the bell.

Clear your mind and try to understand. We’ll never fully grasp what

happened 40 years ago today, but we can show respect and reverence

to those who faced some of the biggest unanswered questions in the

history of our nation.

The above editorial is the consensus opinion of the Daily Kent Stater editorial board.