When the class meets Anne Frank’s best friends, Jopie and Lies, this student feels guilty for not having volunteered to sing a song for them, even though she can sing and Anne Frank means so much to her. Jopie and Lies tell the students about their intimate friendship with Anne. When Lies ended up at the same concentration camp as Anne, she tried to send Anne food across the barbed-wire fence because Anne was starving, even though she could have gotten killed for doing that. In the end, someone else grabbed the bag of food and ran away, and Anne died a few days later.
This student feels guilty for not openly sharing, through singing, her emotions and thoughts with the class and their important guests. The concentration camps where Lies and Anne found themselves stripped many people of basic humanity. However, even in this terrible environment, Lies’s love for and loyalty to her friend led her to sacrifice her own food and risk her own life for Anne.
When this student hears Jopie and Lies’s stories of courage and friendship, she feels guilty for not having dared to sing to them. She concludes that staying silent is always bad, for silence allows for abuse to happen unpunished. During World War II, it allowed the Nazis to kill people with impunity. Speaking up can keep tragedies from happening, and this student vows that she will not remain silent again.
This student realizes that she has a moral responsibility to speak up and say how she feels, as this can demonstrate her courage and inspire others—just like Jopie and Lies have done. Her sense of accountability to herself and the rest of the world leads her to commit to truth and honesty.