This blog post was submitted as an entry in the Teen Impact contest and awarded as a finalist.
As founder of a national organization, I understand that only 10 percent will lead the 90 percent of my generation. I know I am in that 10 percent, so I created a national campaign, Shake Off Violence, beginning with a 90-day ceasefire. The purpose of the campaign is to raise public awareness about youth violence and to promote peace.
With a 40 percent rise in gang membership and a surge in gun violence, I just got tired of seeing my peers die. So I created a campaign to bring together leaders in the anti-violence community, music industry and political arena for a series of events and activities to promote peace among youth.
Participating cities include: Huntsville and Montgomery, AL; Washington, D.C.; Atlanta and Augusta, GA; St. Louis, MO; Jacksonville, NC; Philadelphia, PA; Detroit, MI; Bronx, Harlem, Long Island, and New York, NY; Milwaukee, WI.
The goal of this campaign is to save lives by bringing attention to the simple fact that WE HAVE TO GET THESE GUNS OFF OUR STREETS. We need new gun laws that will protect our future.
How can you get involved? Starting November 11, 2011, do not watch or listen to violent music or shows. Do not participate in physical or verbal violence. No thinking violent thoughts, either. We need people talking about this at your job, on your college campuses, and in your homes. We will have workshops, PSAs and forums created by youth to save our generation, so please visit my website, Marypathector.webs.com.
I believe all things are possible if we try. I hope you will join us as we take a stand against violence.