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The power of our voices

We are extraordinary

October 20, 2019

Growing up, my dad would make it a point to explain to me the ability that we as individuals have in conveying a message to the world. At the age of seven, I did not pay much attention, merely listening so I could go and play with my friends as fast as I possibly could. Now, looking back on the several conversations I have had with my father, I realize all the potential that is bundled up in his advice.

Markus Spiske
A student as she protests

What is courage? Is it our ability to stand up for what we believe in? Is it our ability to dominate the rest? Is it our ability to seek the unimaginable? To me, courage has always been a dominating factor in the way we approach situations. Taking all that we stand for and risking our image for the ideas that are most important to us, that is what courage should be.

In life, however, courage is nothing without a driving force. Now, you may ask, what would that driving force be? To me, the driving force that stimulates every action in our daily lives is power. It is almost as if power is the fuel to the fire of courage. Without a certain quantity of power, the courage that you so fearlessly portray is nonexistent.

Today, the role and acceptance of courage and power have greatly changed in value from what they were as of a few decades ago, possibly even years ago.

Specifically, our society has come to terms with the difference between saying and actually doing. A few decades ago, people were not as open to the idea of physical protests, active performances, and verbal demonstrations that people would conduct in order to illustrate their point of view to the public. Activists were shut down and tormented by groups of people for voicing their opinions. Not to mention, student activists were widely unspoken of.

Recently, the tables have turned. The attention of change has turned to the younger generations who have taken on the great task of fixing all of the worldly corruption.

Furthermore, one way activists share their messages is through voicing their concerns since our voices hold so much more meaning than we believe they do. We have the ability to captivate audiences and strive to create an idea of what a better planet would look like. Students are the core of any change that is needed in society since it is our future at stake. Currently, students all around the globe are standing up for the ideas they believe in, a concept that would have been unheard of during centuries before our own.

Empowerment is sprouting at Westford Academy, growing through the variety of clubs that the high school provides. The NOW! club offered at WA brings awareness to gender equality, a topic that needs to be brought to people’s attention. All around the United States, students are passionately fighting for all genders to receive equal treatment. Similarly, Gender Sexuality Alliance meets to discuss the importance of accepting everyone for who they are, regardless of their identification and sexual orientation. The Junior State of America club is a major player at WA in the field of allowing students to share their thoughts and beliefs when it comes to current-day politics. Also, on the idea of today’s world problems, the environmental club works to improve the way our society deals with nature, which ultimately affects our climate. Although these clubs range in purpose, all of them have one thing in common, which is spreading awareness to current-day problems in the world.

These clubs are just a handful at Westford Academy that facilitate a person’s right to share their message. We, as students, have the ability to make a difference not only in our town but in society, if we took the opportunity.

Students don’t get enough credit. Much of society makes it a point to highlight how teenagers are still growing as individuals and, therefore, should not be taken seriously when they are voicing their opinions. These ideas by the power figures of society are wrong and hold a high level of ignorance. However, even with these people’s disapproval, student activists have taken it upon themselves to keep fighting for what is important.

Widely known, Greta Thunberg, a sixteen-year-old Swedish activist, has been protesting her views on climate change and how the governments of the world need to take action on the problem.

Despite all our personal views on climate change, we should commend Thunberg for her courage. Her motivation and commitment to her cause have made her a household name as well as her protests admired. Thunberg should be a leading example for our generation to fight for the unthinkable. Thunberg and many other student activists have shown us that where there is a cause, there is a voice guiding for change. Coming together and pushing to make our society a better place is what will change laws and people’s outlooks on life.

Civil disobedience, believe it or not, starts revolutions, demands change, and pushes for a better society. Our voices hold so much power. They pave the way for ideas. They pull people in. They spread awareness about problems.

Despite all of the improvements that have been made to society, there is still so much wrong with the world. We can make a difference. Starting at home, at school, your town, your state, or even your country, you can fight for change. You can fight for your vision of tomorrow because we, the students of the world, are its image. Whatever ways we decide to handle the major societal problems that occur are directly reflected back. So, don’t sit at home and complain about the plastic in our oceans or the problems in government or the blatant sexism of the humankind, do something. Work to get your voice heard, because, at the end of the day, your voice is all that matters when it comes to starting a revolution. As Mahatma Gandhi so famously once said, “be the change you wish to see in the world.”

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