Teens Are Sharing How Gun Violence Affects Them -- And We Need To Listen

by Cassandra Stone
Originally Published: 
Image via Joe Raedle/Getty Images

High school students open up about how lawmakers have failed them

Following the latest school shooting in Parkland Florida, it’s become evident that the most important voices we need to hear aren’t those of politicians, or people on social media. They’re the voices of teenagers — those affected directly by gun violence, and those who have to go to school everyday wondering if their school is next.

Writer Maureen Johnson decided to elevate those voices on Twitter yesterday, and what they have to say is profound.

She addressed a tweet to teens only, asking them their honest thoughts about gun control and gun violence.

Responses from teenagers all across the country ranged from anger at the apathy shown by politicians to fear over going to school. All of the replies proved beyond a shadow of a doubt we shouldn’t ever underestimate teenagers, their strength, and their knowledge.

You know what? The kids are alright. Actually, they’re more than that — they’re better than us adults.

Many of these young adults are able to articulate their thoughts into a solid argument against lax gun laws better than lawmakers.

Students are now forced to look at their schools as potential war zones, and there’s absolutely nothing OK about that.

Another argument I’ve seen a lot of from the pro-gun crowd is that mass shootings are the result of “bad parenting” and “entitled millennials.” Which is interesting, considering all of these eloquent and powerful responses from today’s youth speak volumes against that very “argument.”

Hi, hello — Millennial Mom here. I grew up amidst the dawning age of participation trophies and not-always-necessary ego boosts. I also experienced my fair share of childhood trauma, depression, and anxiety. I can also tell you I’ve never once felt like buying an assault rifle and committing mass murder.

Wow. That’s the harsh reality of what many of our schools are forced to prioritize.

Today’s high school students are exceptionally more aware, empathetic, motivated, and angry than generations of teenagers past. Because of those qualities and more, their collective power is going to be what finally changes our world.

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