Some people like to voice an opinion that I'm "too young" to be involved in politics. Some like to criticize my makeup or fashion choices. Others like to assume I have no life or interests that are separate from the ones I write about. To them, it's all about me.
Well, it's not. This is about my fellow citizens and most importantly, my fellow young people. This is about a program that pre-registered over 160,000 16 and 17 year olds in my state being eliminated for no good reason. This is about a Governor who insults the young people of his state rather than encouraging them to get involved in the political process. This is about the LBGT community being discriminated against and denied their basic rights. This is about misogyny, rape culture, and slut shaming. This is about women not having equal protection under the Constitution. This about one of my fellow young people being shot 6 times, twice in the head, by police. This isn't about me. This is about all of us.
So if I can write some words that make people think, I'm going to do that. If one of my friends takes one of my photos and pairs it with some words that stood out from something I've said or written, I'm going to post it. If someone in the media wants to talk to me and I feel like their reason is because they want to bring attention to ideas, I'm going to talk to them.
What I'm not going to do is wait until I have permission to speak. I'm not going to sit back and do nothing when I can make a real difference in shaping the future I will inherit. I'm going to speak my truth and be true to myself.
The challenges we face require us to look beyond ourselves as individuals. They require that we reach out beyond ourselves to those who have different experiences and beliefs. Our challenges require us to be aware, passionate, charitable, and to actively campaign for justice.
Here's the moral to the story
We don't do it for the glory
We don't do it for the money
We don't do it for the fame
So all the critics who despise us
Go ahead and criticize us
It's your tyranny that drives us
Adds the fire to our flames