For the sake of the young we must avoid war with Iran. Tensions are rising between two nations, both great in their bark and bite. No longer does the U.S. walk quietly and carry a big stick. Those drunk with power are loud and boastful and often confusing. The rest of us are left trying to keep up with the hourly remarks coming from all sides. The Pentagon is sending U.S. troops to the Middle East again. When will America’s insatiable appetite for perpetual warfare be satisfied? 9/11/01 was more than 18 years ago. All of America’s children were born after the beginning of our current endless war. We must end endless wars, not begin new ones, for the sake of the young.
For the sake of the young we must keep our schools safe. We must teach our children math and logic as well as caring and kindness. School is not the only place of learning. The young must learn from us by our examples of civility, respect, and understanding towards each other. We must ask ourselves when the costs of certain freedoms become too high. We must consider, without jumping to extremes, what viable options there are to protect schools from violence, for the sake of the young.
For the sake of the young we must feed them not only the fruits of knowledge and kindness, but with meals themselves. About 12.7 million children live below the poverty line in America, equivalent to the total population of 600 Fillmore Counties. We choose where our donations go. There are children in need here at home. Consider attending or hosting an Empty Bowls event in your town, or contribute directly to the Fillmore County food shelf, for the sake of the young.
For the sake of the young we must ensure that they will have clean water, untainted by lead, disease, or animal fecal matter. How apathetic (or negligent) are we to leave them only contaminated water to drink if we have the chance now to keep present water pure for the future? Our short-sighted decisions are not justified if we do not stop to consider the consequences of our actions from the beginning to after our own end. We must not be myopic with our finite natural resources, for the sake of the young.
For the sake of the young we must teach them what we learned too late. The tobacco industry is one example of the deceitful way people propagate misinformation in order to make a profit, regardless of the consequences. True, we were lied to. We were hoodwinked. Lawyers and spokespeople advocated for the health benefits of smoking. All they had to do was lie long, often, and hard enough to convince enough people that smoking wasn’t bad in order to make a very powerful and wealthy industry. The young are not convinced by the same arguments made by the fossil fuel industries about climate change.
Friday, September 20, 2019, marked another day of global youth involvement. Political boundaries were erased yet again as young citizens of a global community walked out of schools and workplaces to participate in what was called the Climate Change Strike. Millions and millions of young people from Australia, Germany, Poland, India, Turkey, Cyprus, Indonesia, Philippines, Hong Kong, France, Bangladesh, Thailand, Czech Republic, United Kingdom, Greece, Kenya, Uganda, Netherlands, Belgium, America, and 130 other nations across the world participated in this global call upon the nations’ leaders to do something, to listen to the scientists, for the sake of the young.
The young are the future. They matter to us, and we matter to them. They asked us to act. They asked us to lead us all to a cleaner and healthier world. They have stopped asking. They are now demanding. Whether we live in Los Angeles or Lanesboro, graduated from Princeton or Preston, for the sake of the young, we must listen, we must act, we must lead.
2017 Census Info on Child Poverty: https://talkpoverty.org/basics/ derived from: https://www.census.gov/content/census/en/library/publications/2018/demo/p60-263.html
2017 Census Info on Fillmore County Poverty: https://www.census.gov/quickfacts/fact/table/fillmorecountyminnesota,US/PST045218
Climate Change Strike: https://globalclimatestrike.net/