Friday morning, on the way to school, the radio announcer read the names and ages of the victims of Florida’s recent high school shooting. A small voice asked from the backseat, “what’s he doing?” so I explained. It led to a deeper conversation, and in less than 5 minutes we covered how crazy our world is becoming, why and how to exercise faith, and finally, how much do you love me. Maybe we both needed reassurance that no matter what happens or what changes, love doesn’t.
Students responded to this recent horrific attack by announcing the March for Our Lives campaign. On March 24, I will applaud the planned march(s) to “demand that children and their families ‘become a priority’ to US lawmakers”. I hope other countries are listening too.
Every generation imagines itself to be more intelligent than the one that went before it, and wiser than the one that comes after it. – George Orwell
Each generation knows it’s going to be the one to exact change in the world and make it a better place. And it will in many ways, building upon the failures and successes of each generation that has gone before it. We inherit the world we live in; we don’t get to form it to meet our values or expectations. Perhaps that desire is ingrained in each of us. In these formative years, as youth explore their world and begin to develop a sense of self, they want to strive for change, and as a society who is continuously evolving (in both good ways and bad), we need their enthusiasm and their optimism. Without it, the countless “battles” in the history of each of our nations, won or lost, would not have shaped who we are and where we are today.
I was caught up in the “No means No” campaign of the early 90’s. In college, I was passionate about working women, and child witnesses of wife assault. After college, I volunteered on a Sexual Assault Crisis Hotline. I was convinced I would change the world. With the recent #Me Too Campaign, maybe in a small way I did. Or at least I helped to pass a baton so change. will. come.
My voice is older and life has sapped much of my energy. Or has maturity simply chipped some of the block off my shoulder? Either way, I continue to hold strong views on violence against women, and I am proud to see my children advocating for those values too. I will never stop using my voice – I am also excited to see what the next generation is saying. I believe it’s worth hearing.
I believe we need to listen.
I believe we need to add our voices.
In all of the struggles for change, throughout the centuries, I see one common bond between each generation, and it is this: we are all aiming for a better, safer, more peaceful world.
And that, my friends, is always something worth fighting for.
Happy (rest of the) Weekend!