How did it happen that the U.S. government has forgotten the well being of its own people? I watched the “March for Our Lives” rally broadcast this morning from Washington D.C. heartsick hearing the Stoneman Douglas student speakers express their pain from the mass shooting at their school. Equally heartbreaking was hearing their frustration from the lack of response from leaders who have done virtually NOTHING after the myriad of massacres that have occurred in schools and public spaces across the US in recent time. I substitute teach part-time in high schools. It’s sad that every time I walk in the door I feel I am not in a safe place anymore. Students feel that every day.
There was a pivotal point in one student’s speech where he said we should “arm teachers.” I sucked in my breath saying to myself “oh not this.” The student went on to say, however, that teachers should be well armed with pencils, paper, books and good enough salaries to teach. The crowd roared. As an educator, I know how underfunded our education system is in this country. We fund wars across the globe, give tax breaks to the rich, but neglect the safety, education, healthcare, & mental health care of our own people. WE MATTER.
If anyone can make a change in this country, these kids can. They have started a movement and I am right there with them. For now, all I could do was write a blog post & make a picture (but that’s what artist’s do).