Why We Need Peaceful Political Protest

This past March, millions of people gathered around the country for the March for Our Lives movement against gun violence. This isn’t the first public political movement that has taken the country by storm in recent years; movements such as the Women’s March and Black Lives Matter marches have become more than common in the past few years. These movements - these gatherings of people united under a common goal - have never been more necessary and beneficial to the state of the country.

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The news of brave kids, teens and adults who stand up and take action for what they believe in never fails to inspire me. Even when I’m not directly involved in a march or protest, I can’t help but feel uplifted. Our country and our government, though supposedly democratic, are too often controlled by one group - a few powerful and wealthy political figures and business owners. The People’s voices are too often overshadowed, ignored in the name of money and power. We must resort to marches, protests and public displays of resistance to be heard. It’s unfortunate that our voices and our input are so often neglected by the government meant to serve us, but movements like March for Our Lives exemplify the power the People maintain in the face of such neglect.

The most inspiring part of March for Our Lives, in my opinion, was the force with which teenagers and children, those most directly affected by the recent Parkland shooting, announced their message to the world. The March’s organizers embodied the power and proactivity that our government representatives are meant to provide us in times of repeated tragedy. A powerful group of teenagers not only advocated for 17 of their classmates whom they lost in one of the 17 school shootings that have occurred this year in the United States, but they also took a firm stand against repeated gun tragedy that our government has refused to take. These students took action to advocate for Common Sense gun laws and strict reform on gun accessibility while our government officials sent tweets of condolences and took no action in preventing another senseless tragedy. The Parkland students and the millions of people who joined them this past month are what we are in dire need of in the United States, and I’m personally endlessly inspired by their advocacy and bravery.