I want to start off by stating that I, along with so many others, are grieving with you and for you. The loss you have endured is something that no child should ever experience, especially at a place you should feel safe. You woke up on February 14, 2018 and could never have been prepared for the heartbreak, loss, and tragedy that this day, the international day of love, had in store for you.
It is completely unfair that you will now shudder at the sound of a firework, thoughts rushing to that unforgettable day, questioning if that noise was real. It is completely unfair that you had to attend the funerals of classmates and faculty that you have loved and admired for years. It is completely unfair that you were forced to question if you were going survive. It is completely unfair that such an evil act has changed your life forever.
I am sorry. I am sorry that this was not stopped.
However, survivors of Douglas High School, what you have already accomplished in the wake of this indescribable tragedy is so inspiring. You have started the conversation that is so desperately needed. You have gotten people thinking. You have shown that there are voices to the survivors and you will NOT be silenced. You have catapulted a movement to ensure that this will #NeverAgain happen.
I am following your twitters, I am watching your interviews, I am hearing every word. You are evoking change. You are rising from this tragedy and have decided to make a difference so that no one else has to experience what you were forced to endure.
You are organizing a march that will change the world. March for our Lives is extremely important and you are using your voices to advocate for a much-needed change in this country. This will lead to policies that will ensure the safety of all, and it will have started with your bravery.
We are listening, D.C. is listening, and the world is listening. Keep your voices shouting for this change. Continue to be the leaders that we are so desperate for. We are all in awe of your courage and perseverance.
And regarding the ones who are questioning you, do not ever let them discourage you. Do not ever let them stop you. Continue to prove to them your strength, bravery, and commitment to providing this change.
I am standing by you and I am rooting for you. Never give up this hope to make this world a better place. You are inspiring a generation.
A generation who needs you.