Stop Taking 'Moments of Silence' And Take Action

Stop Taking 'Moments of Silence' And Take Action

Silence makes history, but never for the right reasons.
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“Courage is confused with picking up arms and cowardness is confused with laying them down.” – Mitch Albom, The Five People You Meet in Heaven

Well wishes are expected following a horrific tragedy and that should not change. In the wake of the Las Vegas shooting that occurred late at night on Oct. 1, many people have taken to social media to express their devastation over the event. These people, as well as politicians, have said that we should have a moment of silence for those who lost their lives or their loved ones following the horrific act.

Silence is not giving victims the respect that they deserve, though.

Thoughts and prayers are not enough to make up for the fact that assault rifles can be easily purchased. Condolences are not enough to compensate for a man being able to have an arsenal of 42 guns, and people still saying that the event was “surprising.”

Silence does not change the fact that gun violence is a pandemic and one that people are willing to sigh and say, “It’s the price that we pay for freedom.”

Freedom does not require an assault rifle. Rather than accepting the situation, it is time for us to take action to prevent further gun violence or help combat its after effects, and there are ways to do it on every level.

Rather than staying silent, we can:

1. Donate blood so that hospitals are prepared for when these horrific events take place.

2. Go out and vote — our representatives should reflect our values.

3. Urge others to go out and vote — silence makes history, but never for the right reasons.

4. Peacefully organize — one's right to bear arms is no more legal than another’s right to "petition the Government for a redress of grievances."

5. Keep talking — don't let it fade into another act of gun violence in our country; whether you speak, write or lobby about it, let your thoughts be heard.

It is easy to think that someone else will find a solution to the problem or for us to use the excuse, “Guns don’t kill people; people kill people.”

Events such as the one in Las Vegas will continue to happen — that is an unfortunate truth. However, they do not need to happen nearly as easily and our words in response do not have to sound as empty if we actually make strides to effect change.

Cover Image Credit: Wisconsin Public Radio

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To The Friends I Won't Talk To After High School

I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.
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Hey,

So, for the last four years I’ve seen you almost everyday. I’ve learned about your annoying little brother, your dogs and your crazy weekend stories. I’ve seen you rock the awful freshman year fashion, date, attend homecoming, study for AP tests, and get accepted into college.

Thank you for asking me about my day, filling me in on your boy drama and giving me the World History homework. Thank you for complimenting my outfits, laughing at me presenting in class and listening to me complain about my parents. Thank you for sending me your Quizlets and being excited for my accomplishments- every single one of them. I appreciate it all because I know that soon I won’t really see you again. And that makes me sad. I’ll no longer see your face every Monday morning, wave hello to you in the hallways or eat lunch with you ever again. We won't live in the same city and sooner or later you might even forget my name.

We didn’t hang out after school but none the less you impacted me in a huge way. You supported my passions, stood up for me and made me laugh. You gave me advice on life the way you saw it and you didn’t have to but you did. I think maybe in just the smallest way, you influenced me. You made me believe that there’s lots of good people in this world that are nice just because they can be. You were real with me and that's all I can really ask for. We were never in the same friend group or got together on the weekends but you were still a good friend to me. You saw me grow up before your eyes and watched me walk into class late with Starbucks every day. I think people like you don’t get enough credit because I might not talk to you after high school but you are still so important to me. So thanks.

With that said, I truly hope that our paths cross one day in the future. You can tell me about how your brothers doing or how you regret the college you picked. Or maybe one day I’ll see you in the grocery store with a ring on your finger and I’ll be so happy you finally got what you deserved so many guys ago.

And if we ever do cross paths, I sincerely hope you became everything you wanted to be. I hope you traveled to Italy, got your dream job and found the love of your life. I hope you have beautiful children and a fluffy dog named Charlie. I hope you found success in love before wealth and I hope you depended on yourself for happiness before anything else. I hope you visited your mom in college and I hope you hugged your little sister every chance you got. She’s in high school now and you always tell her how that was the time of your life. I sincerely hope, every great quality I saw in you, was imprinted on the world.

And hey, maybe I’ll see you at the reunion and maybe just maybe you’ll remember my face. If so, I’d like to catch up, coffee?

Sincerely,

Me

Cover Image Credit: High school Musical

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Yes, I'm A Feminist, No I Don't Hate All Men

Because if we want to promote equality, why fight that with mass hating a particular gender?

nadoty
nadoty
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I'd like to consider myself a feminist.

I am all for equal opportunity, equal pay, and equal rights. I believe that women should be granted the equal opportunities that males do, be free of harassment, not be scared to exist literally just because of their gender, have reproductive rights, be taken seriously when we think something is medically wrong with us, and be treated with the same respect and dignity as men do. Just because I believe all these things, however, doesn't mean I automatically hate men.

I've seen a big increase in trends that, just for men existing, people will post about how "men ain't shit," or how men ultimately suck just because of their gender. When reflecting upon this, however, I've come to realize isn't this a step in the wrong direction?

Obviously, I can't continue on until I say this: there is, in fact, times where men can really suck. White men in positions of power abusing that, men who are rapists, men who meddle in women's reproductive rights, abusers, men who think it's okay and even funny to harass others, etc. But it all comes down to this: just because you're a man doesn't mean I automatically hate you, and I don't think others should.

Sure, as mentioned above, there are garbage humans who abuse their positions of power as men in order to get what they want. THOSE are the people I hate, not others for existing just because they are men. When in reality, there are a lot of good men who recognize their positions of power and try and make up for it by advocating for those in need of advocacy, whether they are women or even minorities. There are men who are decent human beings, whether that is being nice to others, volunteering in their community, caring for those around them, or even men who are also feminists.

I think my argument has been made pretty clear: I do not and will not hate you just because you are a man. No one gets to choose whichever gender they are, so why should I hate a group of people for just being born male? If I want to promote equality as a feminist, why should I then believe that I am better because I am female? Why should I say I believe in equal treatment between genders, yet automatically hate you because you're a man?

So yes, some men truly, "ain't shit." I believe these men, however, are not good human beings. Men aren't terrible just because they are men, and I ultimately wish that those promoting total equality would realize that we cannot strive towards equal treatment, opportunities, and pay if we continue clumping one group together under the impression of, "they're men, they're terrible."

nadoty
nadoty

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