Don’t Let It Happen Here (The Howler Preview)

The Howler editors reflect on school shootings and the need for youth to lead a change


Illustration by Mandy Matteson

India Turner, News Editor

We, as kids, have been waiting for adults and politicians to do what is supposed to be their job, protect us, but we have been left hanging, and are dying because of their refusal to act.  For so long we have stood behind and waited for politicians and leaders to put in place the laws needed in order to save the lives of the children depending on them, and we have continued to die from because of that trust.  We need to stop standing on the sidelines and stop waiting for adults and politicians to make a change because we, as the youth of today, are going to be the ones who lose. We have to start fighting for our own safety because no one will do it for us.  This is a call to attend the marches, write to state and national senators and representatives, and defend the lives of our generation.

Violence in places of education has occurred before.  On March 2, 2018, Carlotta LaNier spoke to our school about the violence and threats she was confronted with when she was one of the Little Rock Nine and was one of the first African American students to enroll at Little Rock Central High upon its desegregation.  On their second day of school, Carlotta LaNier and the rest of the Little Rock Nine went to Central High, only to be met by a mob of hundreds of people stopping them from going to school, and the repeated threats led to armed guards being positioned up and down every hallway.  And students were scared to go to school. Under no circumstance, should students be scared to go to school and have their emotional and mental health suffer because of that fear. We cannot and should not be scared to go to school every day, in a space that is promoted and supposed to be safe for all students.

Those in power are making decisions for the minors who cannot, and those same minors, those without an official voice, are the same ones being killed.  Not the politicians. Us.

The students from Stoneman Douglas High School, after seeing their classmates dead and injured, after hearing gunshots ring through the very hallways where they were told they would be safe, created a fire for our generation. They began a campaign for a new march, one led by students on March 24, called the March for our Lives. The title is blunt, but honest. Our lives are the ones on the lines, and so we must be the ones to fight for them.

Due to recent events with the school walkouts, we have decided to post this excerpt from the staff editorial of this upcoming issue of The Howler magazine.