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‘Young Activists Like Me Are a Force to be Reckoned With’


As the new year begins, Students Demand Action volunteers continue to find new ways to fight gun violence across the country. On Monday, Prism published an op-ed authored by Makayla Jordan, a member of the Students Demand Action National Advisory Board in Birmingham, AL. In the piece, she writes about the importance of Black women’s voices in the fight against gun violence:

“In 2020, the phrase, ‘Black women will save America from itself’ rang true again. We voted to protect ourselves and our communities, as we’ve done for generations. We continued working to protect our communities by using our voices, even when others tried to silence us, and we again proved that Black women are the backbone of this country—and Gen Z Black women are no exception.
“While leaders continue to assume that our generation cares nothing about politics, we prove them wrong time and time again. We know what we want, we know how to get it, and we are starting with the gun violence crisis.
“In Students Demand Action, I met hundreds of other students like me who are tired of empty promises. I helped lead our Summer of Action campaign, an initiative to rally our peers and help register voters through phone, text, and social media, with 10 other young women my age. We supported the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act, chalked our neighborhoods, put up flyers, and registered classmates to vote. In total, we registered over 100,000 voters. My generation is a force to be reckoned with, and we are tired of gun violence in our communities being ignored. 

President Donald Trump threatened our safety and we voted him out. The 2020 presidential election is just the beginning for young activists like me to end gun violence, and we have a lot more victories up our sleeve.

While we are making incredible leaps towards equality, Black Gen Z women are still the one of the most vulnerable groups in our generation. The issues we face aren’t solved by the “thoughts and prayers” from our leaders; instead they are being solved by the mobilization of Black women. The legacy of changemakers like Fannie Lou Hamer are in the thoughts and hearts of young Black women across the country. Our predecessors fought for our seat at the table, and we owe it to them to fight for the change they worked for.”

Read the full op-ed here.