This is why I’m marching on Saturday

Another school shooting.

I see the headline for a moment, then set my phone on the counter and wash the dishes in the sink. I fold a load of laundry and vacuum the carpet. I drink another cup of coffee. I don’t want to read the details.

I read the details.

I read the news report from the safety of my living room while my kids are at school taking math tests, playing on the playground and writing about wombats.

They are so far away from me.

I hope they don’t feel alone today.

I hope they eat the vegetables in their lunch.

I hope they remember to be kind.

I hope they are safe.

Each school shooting drives a nail deeper into my chest. The fear and trauma these kids, parents, and teachers endure are incomprehensible.

Enough is enough.

My son, who is 13, and his fellow classmates participated in the walkout last week. We had talked about the shooting at Parkland High School, me doing my best to protect him from the details, but I didn’t think he gave it much thought.

He did.

He knows what the lockdown drills at his school are about.

He feels the fear and the uneasiness.

He believes those 17 minutes he sat in silence mattered.

He believes change can happen.

He has hope.

He is why I will participate in the March For Our Lives at the State Capitol on Saturday. I march because he, and his fellow students across the country, believe their voices matter and change can happen.

And I believe in them.

I’ve been surprised by the number of people insulting and putting down the Parkland kids, the sheer volume of charts and graphs about how more kids die from car accidents than gunshot wounds, the rationalizing of school shootings as a result of parents not spanking kids and the countless other ways people wanting to hold onto their guns try and spin it.

This isn’t about you and your guns.

It’s about them and their right to feel safe.

This is their moment.

I will march because it’s one action I can take against the insanity.

I will march because the Parkland kids have taken their anger and grief and channeled it into activism and power.

I will march because I believe in these kids and the world they want to create.

I will march.

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*In case you missed it, please watch Lin-Manuel Miranda and Ben Platt singing a charity song they wrote called “Found/Tonight” to raise money for the March For Our Lives movement. Each download helps raise funds and awareness.

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