Dear Youth of America,
Last week, Congress once again failed to pass student loan reforms. Members of our government are trying to make the case for military action in Iraq. Our environment continues to deteriorate. The Koch Brothers just hosted a summit for lawmakers and billionaires. A fight is underway to maintain net neutrality. States are attempting to limit access to women’s health care and birth control. Other states are trying to make it harder for college students to vote and have removed voter pre-registration programs for high school students.
These are just a few of the issues that directly affect you. Hopefully, you’re paying attention and are already aware of at least some of them. If you were born between 1982 and 2003, here is a fact you might not be aware of:
Millennials will comprise more than one in three of adult Americans by 2020.
If you are paying attention to the issues and think you’re powerless, you couldn’t be more wrong. If you’re disgusted to the point you’ve tuned out on participating in solutions, it’s time to turn the volume back up. If you think the answer is to be so anti-establishment that you refuse to participate, it’s time for you to get involved and reflect the change you want to see in the establishment.
Even if you’re not yet able to vote, you have a voice. You can reach out to your legislators, put pressure on corporations to change policies, and grab the person beside you and shake them until they wake up.
We have two choices. We can continue to be distracted by shiny objects while our future is sold and destroyed by those who will die rich before we see the full impact of their decisions or we can show up. That’s all it takes to take control. We need to show up.
There’s a reason certain people in power are taking specific action against the youth of this nation. They are afraid. They know what will happen if we show up. But they are not afraid enough.
The time has come. We need to get loud. We need to stop waiting for our seat and start kicking over tables. We need to stop accepting excuses and start pushing for solutions.
Rights are not given. They are demanded. Policies are enacted by those who are elected. The future will not wait for us. It’s time to wake up, shake things up, and most importantly, show up.
|Madison Kimrey is a student, actress, writer and teen activist who fights for LGBT rights, humane treatment of animals, women’s rights and promotes youth activism and participation in democracy. Follow her other blog, Functional Human Being|