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A Message To Privileged First World Teens From a Privileged First World Teen

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Last night, April 6, 2017, I came home from a long day of school and work (two things we take for granted every day, I am guilty). I opened my Twitter only to find that Donald Trump sent 50 Tomahawk missiles into Syria. I continue to scroll down my timeline only to come across a multitude of jokes on the subject.

Making light of the situation is very disrespectful and dismissive. In reality, if missiles were falling from the sky, you’d be in fear for your life and preparing for the high possibility of death. This is a reality that Syrians have to face almost every day. Although first world countries might have our issues when it comes to equality, discrimination, and police brutality, one thing I can say is that we don’t have to worry about bombs being dropped on our homes in the middle of the night. We don’t have to worry about our hospitals being blown away while doctors are treating patients.

In reality, if missiles were falling from the sky you’d be in fear for your life.

When you were younger, you went to school, and you had recess and nap time. Your parents got to tuck you in at night, and they were completely sure that they would get to see you the next day. They would wake up and pack your lunch or send you off knowing you would still eat because you qualified for free lunch… they knew they would see you later on, and you knew that you would see them. Kids in Syria have gotten way too used to losing a sibling, a parent, a cousin, or a neighbor. Meanwhile, you get to sit at safely sit at home on your cellphone, on your paid LTE or wifi and laugh about the potential of missiles falling from the sky, knowing that you’re not in any real danger. Today, you got to wake up and eat breakfast, you got to go that place that you dread so much called work or school. All day you’ll long for a shower, you’ll long for that bed that you know you’ll get back to eventually.

Many of you reading this know what oppression feels like. Many of you are the same ones who made such ignorant jokes. So it’s disappointing to see the how narrow-minded some of you can be. Just know that sympathy goes a long way. Think before you tweet.

Privilege can be a scary thing. Not knowing what privileges you have hurts people every day. Instead of being oblivious, you could actually make yourself useful and do something to help. Click here to donate to Syrian children. Click here to contribute a donation to Syrian refugees. If you can’t afford it, there are always more ways to help. Simply spreading awareness does wonders. Believe it or not, a lot of people don’t know about whats going on outside of their privileged bubble. The more people know, the more people can help.

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Yasia Howard
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My name is Yasia, I'm 19 and I'm from the east coast. Outside of writing journalism I enjoy slam poetry, reading, indulging in culture, food, music..and most importantly- being heard.


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