May 30, 2017

A Country of Care

Photo Courtesy of multifiles.pressherald.com

by Hannah Paxton ’19

In a time of so much political controversy and antagonism, it is no surprise that a vast amount of protests are taking place all across the country for a variety of causes. Whether it be for women, immigrants, or refugees, people nationwide find reason for disappointment, and put that adversity into action.

However, even with a large portion of the country in protest, there are many people who seem to believe these demonstrations come from a place of immaturity and oversensitivity. They fail to acknowledge the purpose of such a public manner of objection, when truthfully it isn’t too difficult to understand.

When it comes down to it, protest is really about the love of your country, or more specifically, love of the people in your country. On the surface, it’s easy to think that people who are marching in the streets with signs and flags are filled with hate —and that may be the case for some —but the fact is, at its very root, protest comes from a place of love.

And that love is manifested in taking action against something one might think is unjust, in the hopes of bringing about some sort of change. People are so quick to judge those who walk in solidarity, many of whom are young adults that get labeled as hypersensitive and childish, as though they are children throwing a fit for not getting their way. But the truth is that young people are probably the most important when it comes to standing up against an unjustified cause.

We are the future. The power to make change is in the hands of our generation. No matter what anyone else says, we are the ones who are most capable of making visible and significant progress.

Too often when people are upset about political events, they will do no more than complain to anyone around them about injustice, and declare that a change needs to be made, but ultimately do nothing about it.

They will sit in discontent, but it isn’t enough to mobilize their anger. Call us immature and petulant, but our generation knows what it is doing when we recognize inequality and publicly fight against it. It might take a lot of time and effort, but we know that nothing in the world is ever going to change if we don’t take that first step to change it ourselves.

People of all ages, backgrounds, and ethnicities join together to protest, and that is what makes it so meaningful. In this one action, people from all different walks of life are standing together in unity to stand up for justice and equality, and if that isn’t showing awareness and maturity, then nothing else is.

So, while from the sides of the street, or on the couch in front of the TV, it may seem inconsequential or a waste of time, these are people who care enough about our country and the people who live in it to express their frustration in a way that is not only peaceful, but also adequate for making change happen.

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