Gandhi once said “You must be the change you wish to see in the world.” That quote is very meaningful to me, because nothing happens when you sit around, hoping, that change will come. If you want something to change, you need to take that into your own hands. You sometimes have to step outside of your comfort zone in order to do so, like I am doing right now.
My name is Katrina Telnack. I am a student at Reeves Middle School, and want to thank you all so much for coming out today! As a student, hearing about all the mass shootings, many of which take place at schools, is scary and extremely disturbing. They continue happening all over the country, and I can’t help thinking ‘when will it happen here, possibly to me?’ We should not have to be worried about our safety at school. Or anywhere, for that matter.
It is so inspiring to see all the students from Parkland standing up and speaking out about gun violence. They have encouraged people all over the world to do the same. It makes me sad to see that people would rather protect their guns than children. It’s time for us to stand up for ourselves in a time when many of our politicians seem as though they couldn’t care less.
In my 8th grade Social Studies class, we have been learning about the Constitution. My teacher had us all memorize the Preamble, and in it, it says “Promote the General Welfare,” which, to me, means helping to ensure that all citizens are safe and taken care of. NOT passing gun control laws is allowing these tragedies to continue happening, which HARMS the general welfare of our citizens, and makes us feel scared and unsafe.
You may feel there is nothing you can do about it, but you’ve ALREADY done something by showing up today! So THANK YOU, AGAIN! I have already written to, emailed, and talked with legislators about these issues and how they can make changes, and so can you! You can start today by writing a postcard to our legislators at the booth we have in Sylvester Park at the end of the march. We’re all here because this affects ALL OF US! I believe that, if we, ESPECIALLY students, continue our efforts, it will show them that we will have ‘no more silence’ and WILL ‘end gun violence.’
This is the text of a speech that Katrina Telnack gave before about 4500 people at the students’ March for our Lives Rally in Olympia on March 24, 2018. Katrina attends Reeves Middle School.