Since the horrible Sandy Hook massacre in 2012, more than 7,000 students have been murdered in instances of gun violence. An activist group recently placed 7,000 pairs of shoes on Capitol Hill to memorialize their lives and turn the causes of their deaths into activism. Many blame lax gun-control laws and gun-culture for the truly astounding number of deaths that happen in the United States alone.
The recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida has inspired many teen activists such as Emma Gonzales, a survivor of the Parkland shooting, to use their voices to advocate for change surrounding guns. And it worked, somewhat. Florida passed a law raising the minimum age to own a gun to 21, banning bump stocks, imposing a 3-day waiting period, and allocating money towards mental health treatment in the state. Along with the law passed the option for some educators in complying districts to train with and carry firearms, so as to be a deterrent in the case of a school shooting.
However controversial the clause about arming educators may be, the Florida law is a huge win for a movement that was spearheaded by student and teenage activists. For too long has society and most of politics thrown aside it’s youth as too naive or too short-minded to cause change that will very well change lives. The #NeverAgain and #MarchForOurLives movements happening throughout the country are pressuring politicians to take action of issues they have never before.
On the eve of my very own school’s walk out, I feel it is my responsibility remind the rest of society that we, the teen activists, can change the world with my actions. We are future voters that will kick NRA-corrupted politicians off their high pedestal. We are the generation that will, and has, taken a hard stand about innocent people dying in vain. We are a vision of the powerful future, and we demand respect.
Featured Image: VOX