Students and allies will mobilize against gun violence during the March for Our Lives in Washington D.C.—and at solidarity actions around the world—tomorrow (March 24). Teen Vogue magazine honored the children and young adults leading the charge on its latest cover today (March 23).
Last Saturday, @CliftonKinnie, @NickSwerve, Jazmine Wildcat, @KenidraRWoods_ and Natalie Barden — youth from different backgrounds with different connections to the issue — spoke candidly about their experiences and what’s to come. #NeverAgain https://t.co/Ry6AFyaVBo
— Teen Vogue (@TeenVogue) March 23, 2018
The issue profiles several young people, including many students of color, whose advocacy tackles the ways that inadequate gun laws and NRA power lead to needless suffering. Ferguson native Clifton Kinnie founded Our Destiny STL to organize against police violence after ex-officer Darren Wilson shot and killed Michael Brown. Jazmine Wildcat, a member of the Northern Arapaho Indigenous peoples, breaks with the gun-friendly traditions of her rural Wyoming community to petition state legislators for gun control laws. Emma González and fellow survivors of the mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, are using their newfound prominence to advance the conversations around gun control.
González addresses the need for these voices in her essay in Teen Vogue:
The problem of gun violence goes beyond the countless demographic differences between people. Any way you cut it, one of the biggest threats to life as a teen in the U.S. today is being shot. People have been shot to death en masse in grocery stores, movie theaters, nightclubs and libraries, on school campuses and front porches, and at concerts—anywhere and everywhere, regardless of socioeconomic background, skin color, age, ethnicity, religion, gender, geographical location.
The media afforded a group of high school students the opportunity to wedge our foot in the door, but we aren’t going through this alone. As a group, and as a movement, it’s vital that we acknowledge and utilize our privilege, use our platforms to spread the names of the dead and the injured, promote ideas that can help spread kindness rather than hostility, support those who aren’t being heard, take our voices and use them together with the megaphones provided.