When my teenage grandson and friends peacefully marched from Niagara Square to Bidwell Parkway, I have never been prouder, or more hopeful for change. For so many generations, we discussed, protested and legislated to end racial based murders, injustice, discrimination and the senseless mass shootings. Coverage of the ongoing protests has highlighted, very little has changed for people of color.
Those teens are elevating the social conscience of their families and everyone around them. That caring and genuine concern for all people, needs to continue and grow within his generation. I told him there was more he and his friends had to do, even though they can’t vote. Volunteer and work hard to help like-minded, compassionate people who can vote, to vote. This will help elect sincere, honest people of action replace do nothings in office.
That didn’t happen after Rosa Parks in the 50s, the Woolworth’s lunch counter sit-in in 1960, Martin Luther King, Rodney King, Trayvon Martin, … and so many more. For most minorities, educational, health care, criminal justice and income disparities have grown. After Columbine, Sandy Hook, Stoneman-Douglas and many more, gun violence has continued.
I’m looking forward to their generation accomplishing what my fellow boomers, their parents and children haven’t. End the systematic racism, police brutality and elite, white privilege we have turned a blind eye to for generations and to do it now. Let my grandson’s generation be the last to experience school children senselessly murdered and to see the few bad police officers profiling and repeatedly killing unarmed black people. Their children should not need active shooter drills or be afraid to go to school. Minority youth should be as safe on the streets in our country as my grandson and his East Aurora friends are.