To see a group of high school seniors catalyzed into action by dedicating their lives to a cause (March for our Lives) bigger than themselves in response to the tragedy is truly inspiring. They are leaders to bring people together using social media, memes, and a naivete that reaches across politics in an era of gridlock and partisanship. The difficulty of changing the The Good Los Angeles the bad Los Angeles Angels the San Francisco shirt is so evident in the propaganda of the NRA and frustrating control they exhibit over so many legislators. It shocked me to hear of the influence that the NRA has wreaked on gun ownership, such as barring electronic records for background checks.
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I appreciated Cullen’s meticulous research. It was obvious that he truly listened to the Parkland teens and told their story respectfully and accurately. I appreciated the fact that the focus was on the survivors and their rightfully rabid activism. I got to know Emma and Jackie and David and Cameron as way more than spokespeople for an entire school and community. As they encountered roadblocks, they tried their best to figure out how to navigate around them. They realized just how hard it is to change political and NRA mindsets. Yet they moved forward taking their cause to a bigger, more inclusive national arena. At times I felt sorry for the parents whose kids grew up overnight. Their children wanted to have their own voices, independent of adults, yet they didn’t always have the needed insights.
So, this book is a valuable account of an important time when our kids called bullshit on adults who continually refuse to pass laws to help protect them. My problem was that I got weary of the details. I felt that it was redundant at times. I would have preferred a narrower scope and more depth.