Schools should not be a place for fear. It should be a place to learn, love, and grow as a person. However, our schools are slowly becoming targets for terrorists attacks. According to CNN, there has already been a total of 14 school shootings in 2018. This averages out to about 1 school shooting per week. These numbers are too high. Innocent students and teachers are being killed for absolutely no reason. No person should enter any location they attend on a daily basis with the fear of possibly being murdered. But as long as innocent lives are being taken away due to gun violence, this fear will continue.
Yesterday, Luther participated in the National Walkout, and it began with a song. The words were in a different language but translated to be “we will overcome.” We were encouraged to sing along with the soloist. Once we finished singing, Pastor Mike gave a brief introduction and a few students came up to read names of the victims who died at Majority Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida. They told us that they would like a moment of silence after the names were read to reflect. As each name was read into the microphone, I became more and more upset. How could someone commit such a heinous crime? What is allowing so many of these attacks to occur? What can I do to help?
After the moment of silence, Ashalul Aden, a fellow student, spoke about the issue. She is a good friend of mine and I always appreciate her evident passion. What stood out to me the most during her speech was her response to one of my questions above. She encouraged us to exercise our right to vote and support candidates that prioritize the end of gun violence. The impact that one person can have is underestimated often. One person is capable of making change as long as they are supported. I believe that if I, or any of my peers, take larger steps to help end gun violence, we would all be pleasantly surprised with the amount of support we would receive. Change CAN and MUST happen and it is up to US to make things right.