Change the World ... Start Here
By Kristin, age 13, California
Teens have been faced with difficult choices in high school for years and years, but, now these choices, such as doing drugs, smoking, and having sex, are beginning as early as 5th or 6th grade. It's a frightening thing not only for parents, but for the children themselves, and it goes further than just choices they can make. For example, a friend of mine recently told me about a rape that took place in the bathroom of her middle school involving a 7th grade boy and a 6th grade girl.
It doesn't matter if you live in the worst neighborhood or a nice area as she does. Things like this happen every day. So what are we as teenagers, parents, and society doing about it? Almost nothing. Of course, most parents take precautions to make sure that their children are safe, but once they drop their kids off at school anything can happen.
So what are schools doing about it? They're practicing drills for things such as fire and shootings, but a kid knowing to throw a book at a shooter isn't enough. Some newer schools have better security, such as the Amish school that was terrorized a few months ago. They now have the kind of security all schools should be required to have, but it isn't until something happens that schools change things, and this goes much further than school shootings. For example, it isn't until someone has been convicted of a crime that the victim is taken out of harm's way, and sometimes not even then. There is absolutely nothing to stop molestation, spousal abuse, or child abuse from happening because it isn't until the victim is dead or seriously harmed that the courts can do anything about it.
These serious judicial problems cannot be changed unless we as a nation fight to change them. Even something as simple as our parents being on the PTA to fight for better security at our school is making a change for the better in the community. So please do your part. If you're on student council, force the district into changing things. Anyone can help just by spreading the word about how things need to be different. Do what you can and you'll be changing the world ... one step at a time.