March 20, 2018

We Rally Here Today in Solidarity

By Sahar Mohammadzadeh

We rally here today in solidarity. With remembrance. With respect for the courageous who shared their narratives, and with appreciation for those who came from all corners of the state to spark the integral conversations that need to be happening inside of the walls of the building behind me, not just on the steps. Our stories, our narratives hold tremendous power to ignite change.


Here on the Capitol Steps, we have the state’s attention, and now is the time to capitalize on that. This fight doesn’t stop at the rally’s end, nor when we go home or when we go to school tomorrow. It is imperative, critical that we call our legislators that we hold them accountable for representing their constituents--constituents that include those of us who may even be too young to vote. It is imperative that we have these intergenerational conversations. It is imperative that we continue to amplify the voices of every students from all backgrounds.


Kentucky must know that all of our voices matter.


So in this light, let them hear our voices. Let us tell them to Stand with Students.


What do we say to Kentucky Legislators?


STAND WITH STUDENTS


We are tired of walking into classrooms and having our first thought be, “Where would we hide in the event of a school shooting.” So we say to Kentucky legislators:


STAND WITH STUDENTS


We are tired of schools being a place where we no longer feel safe, where we are perpetually on edge and uneasy. So we say to Kentucky Legislators


STAND WITH STUDENTS


We are tired of not talking about school climate and the relationships students have towards each other. We need to make schools a place where students feel welcomed and loved. So we say to Kentucky legislators:


STAND WITH STUDENTS


We are tired of hardening our schools. Rather than talking about hardening, we should be talking about creating more compassionate ones. So we say to Kentucky legislators:


STAND WITH STUDENTS


We students are tired of attending schools that don’t place a critical emphasis on mental health and well-being. So we say to Kentucky legislators.


STAND WITH STUDENTS


We students are tired of having to fight for representation because just because we are too young to vote doesn’t mean we can’t have a voice. So we say to Kentucky legislatures.


STAND WITH STUDENTS


We commit to continue to make Kentucky’s education system the best it can possibly be by getting and staying involved in finding solutions to threats to our safety and other things that hold us back. We commit to do this because we know we are not alone. We know that young people and adults can, must, and will work together to—please say it with me one last time—


STAND WITH STUDENTS

These remarks were deliverd at the March For Our Lives Kentucky Rally organized by the Student Voice Team on the steps of the capitol in Frankfort on March 20, 2018.

Sahar Mohammadzadeh

Sahar Mohammadzadeh

Sahar is a Yoda Corps Advisor and co-founder of KSVT. She is a former member and was previously the Postsecondary Research and Outreach Director. Sahar graduated from Paul Laurence Dunbar High School in 2018 and is a student at Harvard University.