People will say what they will say, but today, students of Idaho were bold and fearless and the success of Idaho’s education rally cannot be ignored. Despite threats of detention, truancies or suspension, hundreds of Idaho students were present on the Capitol steps to have their voices heard. They chose to be a part of a decision making process that impacts us all. It was brought up to us (People For Unity) that our chants could be heard within the Capitol building and as far away as the Chase building. Our efforts were noticed.
From one student to another, I could not be more inspired. I know it can be scary and uncomfortable to put yourself out there, and you will get push back, but that’s when you know you are doing something right. Change starts from the grassroots level up, and change started today, with you.
“Show me what democracy looks like!...This is what democracy looks like!”
You may have noticed legislators objecting to our efforts or the anti-protestors. Be encouraged by this, because this means that they are noticing our efforts, our voices can no longer be ignored.
Many of you were interviewed by reporters, it was apparent that you knew what you were talking about. Preceding the rally, there were concerns that students did not know why they were protesting and only wanted an excuse to leave class, it was clear that this was not the case.
Students, we are the future. We are told this every day, and it’s time that those who tell us this begin to take us seriously. We will no longer accept being ‘young’ as an excuse to discount our opinions, viewpoints and feelings, we are also impacted by choices made by our government. Harness your youth, your energy and embrace your fresh outlook, it has more value than you know.
Finally, be proud. Be proud of yourself, your peers, teachers and community today. Show up and keep showing up. This is the beginning of powerful, worthwhile change.
Nora Harren and People For Unity