Student Activism Has No Minimum Age

Today, yet again, proved to me that student activism has no minimum age.

Henry Gaff, a graduating senior from Cedar Falls High School, recently announced that he will be running for federal district one in Iowa. Gaff is associated with the Iowa Green Party.

As I sat down today with Gaff, we bounced from topic to topic but one in particular caught my attention.

Gaff, while laughing, explained to me his origins with becoming acquainted with civics.

“In junior high I ran a halfway satirical campaign against our student council. I didn’t win, but it was good. It turned into a thing where the people that supported me and wrote my name in the ballot later got in a bit of a scuffle over cross dressing issues. A student was cross dressing and they [administration] sent him home. So, we went to the office and had a discussion with the principal and vice principal that eventually turned into creating an LGBT committee that continues today. I think my sister is still on it.”

While Administrators across the country are seeing students take action and speak up for what they believe in, this is nowhere near ‘normal’ in America’s school system.

With a recent surge in campaign announcements for the 2018 election, America’s young people are no longer sitting complacently.

Students across our nation are no longer accepting status quo.

Students are no longer (nor where they ever) interested in receiving the same treatment and education that existed 100 years ago.

Students are ready and are using their voice to change their communities around them.

Students that continue to dream big and stay positive, like Henry Gaff, fill me with hope.

And frankly, people, it’s time we start using our voice to support them.

Gaff’s campaign is still young and could use all the support it can get. Check out his website if you’re interested in volunteering, donating, or learning more about his platform.