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Student Starts Anti-Gun Petition Against PUSD

The online petition calls on the Pasadena Unified School District to stop purchasing supplies from businesses that manufacture or sell guns.

In the wake of gun-related tragedies around the country, students in the Pasadena Unified School District are asking the district to stop supporting businesses that manufacture or sell guns. 

The petition, which is online through change.org, states:

After witnessing the multitude of gun related tragedies that have occurred recently, we feel the need to change the accessibility of guns in our society. Although we cannot directly pass any laws concerning gun control, we are hoping to boycott industrial superstores that sell these weapons and ammunition (such as Big 5 and Walmart). To do this, we are asking you, the PUSD School Board, to stop buying supplies from said stores. 

Those who sign the online petition can also choose to state their reason for signing. As of Friday at 12:26 p.m, 116 people from Pasadena, Altadena and Sierra Madre had signed the petition, which is aiming for 200 supporters total. 

Roxana Honowitz is credited with the petition online. It is unknown whether or not she is related to Pasadena Unified School District Vice President Ed Honowitz, though he has three children in the district according to his PUSD online bio.

What do you think of the petition? Have you signed it? Share your thoughts below.

not Carl Peterson lll January 25, 2013 at 11:18 PM
Roxana, I am with you in wanting to do something about this issue. While 99.9% of people talk about problems, .01% take positive action. However I think the path here is a dead end. Let's say your campaign is a success. Now the person that might of bought a gun at the retailers you target, will simply go to another one. The PUSD will follow the same course, and pay more (of our tax $), somewhere else. The only difference is more cost going to different hands. The energy and good feelings of doing something therefore is used up, without any real change. Meanwhile people feel good about doing something, and might not look at other ideas that would have true results
pusddad January 26, 2013 at 03:34 AM
I like it.
Ivan G January 26, 2013 at 04:31 AM
I think that the students don't know what they are talking about. Why would PUSD buy supplies from Big 5? And Walmart does not sell guns in California. Is this petition home grown?
Walter January 26, 2013 at 05:39 AM
This makes me feel real good inside.
Bette Solomon January 26, 2013 at 02:58 PM
It's a feel-good solution that does not really address the issue. Legitimate businesses selling guns are not the problem; criminals are. They ignore laws. PUSD should stick to the business of educating young people and stay out of social issues. The taxpayers support the schools for that one purpose, and it is plenty.
pusddad January 26, 2013 at 06:49 PM
playground equipment, sporting goods, team gear?
Louis Educe January 26, 2013 at 09:56 PM
What a great way for our PUSD students, parents, and community members to show support for the idea of divestiture for a worthy cause. (If I might add, Cal STRS and PERS have already been called to divest from gun makers in their stock holdings) In the 80's as a students I was told that the UC system had holdings in South African and rallied and marched to let them know I opposed that idea. Many people said the same things - it won't make a difference - it will raise costs - blah blah blah - but it WAS the right thing to do, and S.A. changed. And Buzz - you are correct - there might be a higher cost involved in standing up for an idea that is right. So? The fact that there is a cost involved doesn't make the worth of the idea any less. And Bette - you are right criminals still will get the guns, but should an educational establishment be supporting companies that sell guns? If that is OK how about Anheuser Busch or Philip Morris? Good going Roxana - I'll log in and sign the petition myself, thank you for taking a stand! (and by the way who cares if she is related to anyone? does that make any difference?)
Russell Person January 26, 2013 at 10:54 PM
I'd like to order 12 boxes of copy paper and oh, can you show me that semi-automatic? Come on, If this isn't grandstanding what is?
not Carl Peterson lll January 26, 2013 at 10:57 PM
Louise, perhaps we agree that the boycott, might go beyond a "feel good" moment, and help the momentum of the issue somehow. However, it is a simple fact of life that it is not up to those who force our taxes to decide which side of an issue to politicize, and charge us for it. You would then want them to be biased with our money, and at a higher cost, no matter what side of the issue anyone stands on. I am certainly no constitutional lawyer, but I don't think that's correct policy. My other point is, if one agrees that this is mostly a dead end, the energy and momentum that might go to something that would truly adress the problem gets sidetracked. If you are hiking to mt Wilson, and decide to go of trail because it is simple and feels good, you will temporarily feel good, but never reach mt Wilson.
Louis Educe January 26, 2013 at 10:57 PM
I'd rather she petition about guns than sandwiches, much more worthwhile :-)
Louis Educe January 26, 2013 at 11:10 PM
I take the hike up to Wilson all the time as a matter of fact. and there are many different paths up. (trail, road, ridge, x-country) each with their own positives and negatives. the most important thing to ensure reaching the top (your goal) is to keep your sense of direction and don't give up if the view is lost behind a ridge. Keep going and it will come into view closer than before. I do hope that our educational leaders make choices based on more than just the bottom line. Bringing value to the education of our youth is more about principles than profit margins. the fact is that divestiture is about NOT taking sides and withdrawing support for an issue which if it is valid should be able to stand on its own merits, rather than because of being propped up with both our tax dollars.
not Carl Peterson lll January 27, 2013 at 02:17 AM
Louis, if a school system decides to boycott a business because of the personal views of some, and against the views of others,....how is that NOTtaking a side of an issue? Lets follow your path.......Lets say they do as you hope. What do you think would be the result from this action?
Louis Educe January 27, 2013 at 04:23 AM
Buzz, I didn't write the petition, if I did I might have worded it differently, but my main point in all this has been that Roxana should be commended for seeing an issue that she feels is important, taking a stand and starting a discussion. If the outcome is in her favor or not, she has taken a stand on an issue currently on the national stage - that alone is more than many of our youth can say for themselves. Trying to undermine her by saying that her effort is a moot point sets the example that we as individual members of a community or nation should only stand up for things we know will be accepted. I for one would rather have our youth active in our nation then passive. In answer to your question - I hope one way or another people will think about the message given by a school district supporting industries which potentially have devastating consequences for their clients, the students.
not Carl Peterson lll January 27, 2013 at 06:21 AM
.OK... .....I'll play nice. If you read my first comment i aplaud her for being that one in a thousand for taking action. If This action fans out to something positive I will be as happy as anyone. ROXANNE: I am proud of you for actually doing something instead of just bitching about it like the other 99 percent of us. Great ideas always start in a single persons head. There will always be people who believe in you. And always those who don't. This is your forward motion in life right now. Success comes when you can work past ( and learn) from others like me who do not see the same pot of gold at the end of your rainbow. The times in my life I ran boldly where everyone else tried to pull me down, were some of the best memories of my life. I want you to prove me wrong because we both have the same end result in mind. On 911 on an impulse I stood over the 210 freeway with an American flag in one hand, and a clenched fist with the other. ABC news picked it up, and the next thing you know, a hundred people came out of their houses to join me. One kid came with his dad with a cupcake, and a drawing of me from his viewing me on TV. I still have that drawing, and will keep it like its from one of my kids. Good luck
Ivan G January 27, 2013 at 07:44 PM
PUSD should boycott Whole Foods, Ralphs and Vons because they sell butter, cream and whole milk. These products are bad for children and everyone else.
Louis Educe January 27, 2013 at 10:33 PM
Was just in my car and heard KNX1070 do a piece on this, so it has been picked up by them (and therefore CBS too). hopefully Roxana will get a lasting memory out of this like you did on 9/11. (I remember seeing you, and going out and putting up my house flag - Thanks!)
D Shelley January 28, 2013 at 03:58 AM
Really, Ivan? My grandparents ate the products you mentioned their whole lives and they ALL four of them lived into their 80's (grandpa's) and 90's (grandma's) and did so at a normal weight. You need to read up a bit on the process used to make skim milk products and what gets messed up when you consume them. More on topic: It IS relevant as to whether Roxanna is Ed Honowitz's daughter! If it isn't, why would it be a secret?
pusddad January 28, 2013 at 04:28 PM
Its also harder to pull off a massacre of a second grade class armed only with butter, cream and whole milk.
Louis Educe January 28, 2013 at 05:44 PM
D.Shelley - Don't know if you have kids but wouldn't you want their ideas and work to be judged on its own merits rather than as a reflection of what people think of or the feelings they have about you? If this young lady is related to Mr. Honowitz, so what... the only issue I would have is that if it does come before the board for a motion or vote he would then have to recuse himself. Often times children of public figures (or teachers, or police officers, or celebs), are also involved with issues they feel strongly about, but sometimes their efforts are sidetracked due to the "family name". My feelings are let it be and if she chooses to share anything OK otherwise so what.
Louis Educe January 28, 2013 at 06:00 PM
Also here is a link to an LA times blog on this http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/lanow/2013/01/gun-sales-targeted-by-students-in-pasadena.html it answers some of the questions raised by some people, but I don't think who she is related to has any bearing on it.
D Shelley January 28, 2013 at 10:49 PM
I am a retired PUSD teacher and am very familiar with the politics and ethics of Mr. Honowitz and his family. This is not a grown independent woman, she is a student still being supported by her dad. It would not be beneath Mr. Honowitz to "suggest" something to his daughter that would reflect his own desires for the district and the way they spend our money. There have been way too many instances of money being steered into the hands of Mr. Honowitz's cronies (including his wife's) hands rather than going to competitive bidders. I personally do not shop at WalMart due to my personal concerns with their corporate policies in regards to policies involving women and their devastating effect on small town businesses. If Roxanna wants to encourage individuals in the district to boycott WalMart to make a statement, great, but I notice that she isn't doing that. To attempt to steer the way the district spends OUR money in a way that might deny tax payers the best bang for their buck while purchasing precious supplies is not her job. That's her dad's job and, in this time of transparency and accountability, the decisions should come from the administration and board with them having to give explanations as to why they did what they did. Period!
D Shelley January 28, 2013 at 10:56 PM
The district could start with the very basics, such as making sure that teachers have the ability to lock their doors from the inside rather than having to grab their keys, open the door and lock it from the outside. In some instances, the doors actually open OUT, so the first thing a teacher must do upon hearing gunshots or hearing a lock down warning is to step out into the hallway! ALL OF THEM!! Shooter starts shooting and just has to stand still and wait for ALL of the teachers to step out into the hallway. Ducks in a barrel! Smart, huh?
Louis Educe January 28, 2013 at 11:46 PM
well as of 1/28 @ 3:35 there are 189 people who have signed her petition online. I doubt all of them are affiliated with Mr. Honowitz. If you read the link above to the LA Times blog it states that it was a student club which chose to create the petition, and while Roxana is stated as being one of the student leaders, I am sure it was more than just her vote alone which got it done. As I also stated, if the district board takes any action on this petition he should recuse himself because of her involvement. The rest of the board should be able to make an informed decision, and choose the perception they want to project to the community on this issue. Hopefully every choice made in the education of our youth today isn't based on the bottom line costs involved.
Louis Educe January 28, 2013 at 11:56 PM
I couldn't agree more, at a recent Sierra Madre parent meeting I had my question asked about the state of "lockdown supplies" currently in-place in the classrooms - We were told by both the upper and lower principals that there were none in place unless the teachers had done it themselves (Earthquake supplies in bins on playground -yes) They know this is an issue and are looking a funds to get supples in place. The retro fitting of door locks on the older doors was also mentioned (new construction have different locks and handles) they talked about having all doors always locked and either you just have to open them when knocked on or propped open with a stopper which can be kicked out and the door pulled shut (neither option is best - but both are better than having to go out into the hall). here is a link to what I bought for my own classroom a few years ago after a lockdown we had: http://www.myproship.com/index.aspx?StId=548&ShId=71aef274b2bb447290022ddd28820766&tab=13&Qtype=2&sku=6401L FYI - all school doors for classrooms by code have to open OUT due to fire regulations.
pusddad January 29, 2013 at 12:58 AM
Shelley: are you saying this petition is merely a Honowitz ploy to enrich himself and/or his cronies?
D Shelley January 29, 2013 at 01:28 AM
Louis, FYI all classroom doors at Jefferson, in the fairly new construction area open IN to the classrooms from interior hallways except for a couple near the principal's office that open OUT onto a narrow hallway. The doors that open out are across from restrooms and the nurse's office that also have doorways that open out. When everyone tries to exit at the same time (like in a fire) the hallway is virtually blocked by doors. There are also huge windows on the inside with no blinds which allows anyone strolling down the hallway (carrying a gun) to see inside the classroom (nowhere to hide). A few years back, a Pasadena police officer came in and advised teachers to paper over the interior windows with decorations and work with their doors locked. The officer likened the school layout to a "shooting gallery". The next year, the new principal, Hoori Chalian, ordered teachers to tear down the paper and to not ever lock their doors when they were teaching so that she wouldn't have to bother taking her keys out to enter the room. When teachers objected to tearing down the paper, they were told that they would be written up if they left it up or locked their doors. (Of course the Ms. Chalian immediately ordered heavy curtains for HER interior windows and always worked with her door CLOSED AND LOCKED!!!) As the Pasadena police officer told us, "In the PUSD, it's not a matter of IF, it's a matter of WHEN!" The very next week, Blair went into lock down over a gun on campus.
Ivan G January 29, 2013 at 01:49 AM
To D Shelley: It is every bit as logical as boycotting stores that sell guns and ammunition. True, there are some people who do not appear to be harmed by eating these products, just as there are some people who smoke and live to be 90. Equally, the vast majority of our population is not harmed by a firearm, and some benefit from firearms. (For example, some people have fended off home invasions.) Research is very clear that butterfat consumption promotes high cholesterol and heart disease in the population at large. In fact, whole milk and 2% milk are banned from school luch programs. If the goal is to save lives, boycotting stores that sell whole milk (or tobacco products) would be more productive.

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