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Are we experiencing ‘youthquake’

Michaela Reid, Outgoing Editor-in-chief

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At 2017’s close, Oxford Dictionaries’ selected “youthquake” as the word of the year, defining it as “‘a significant cultural, political, or social change arising from the actions or influence of young people.”

From the wake of the horrific Florida shooting, students across the country have emerged in the political world as a push for change. They led marches against gun control, called out politicians on Twitter, held school-wide walkouts and forced debate on national news. if there is truly a “youthquake” under our feet.

Recent news narratives of teens linking arms in Florida, New York, Santa Monica, Chicago and many more cities and towns, have created a clear trend over this past year. However, the verdict of whether this year’s senior class’s level of political involvement is still pending.  

Psychology teacher Terri Davis interpreted this “youthquake” as a reappearance of her father’s baby boomer generation.

“They were the protesters. They got out there and they marched. They got all of that legislation changed… I kind of do see you all as doing the same thing… continuing that legacy… I do think it will continue with you guys.”

Senior and co-founder of non-profit “We Are Human”,  Gabbi Bello says her senior class is not as politically engaged as the nations portrayal stating, ‘most students are twitter activists’.

“I wouldn’t say our senior (class) as a whole is a part of this ‘youthquake’, but I do believe there are some students who are. There are definitely students who are striving to make a change, but I don’t think it’s a majority,” Bello said.“I feel that the senior class is definitely aware of the injustices taking place… but I can’t confidently say our senior class as a whole is a big part of this ‘youthquake.’”

However, senior Noor Ryan gives much more credit to the graduating class.

“Yes, I think that with the current political climate and because of our current president, politics and the news are more on people’s radars than ever before.” Ryan said, “ Especially if people feel like someone else’s rights are being infringed on, then the urge to voice their thoughts and concerns will rise.”

The term “youthquake” originally crowned from the 1960’s British youth’s fashion and musical upheaval has taken on a new form in student-led politics.

Hopefully, the 2018 senior class will turn the words into action.

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Are we experiencing ‘youthquake’