Last Tuesday, the Democratic Party of Evanston sponsored a gun violence awareness event at Evanston Township High School (ETHS) that brought together ETHS students, students from Parkland, Florida's Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School/March for Our Lives, and members of The Faith Community of Saint Sabina's B.R.A.V.E. youth initiative to showcase how our youth are leading the charge to end the gun violence epidemic in America and to inspire and encourage those who can vote to vote for candidates who support stronger gun legislation and initiatives to invest in underserved communities.
ETHS student activists Liana Wallace and Nia Williams performed powerful spoken word pieces at the event. If you haven't had the chance to hear these pieces, you can read them now.
First, here's Liana's, which she wrote and performed first at the ETHS student walkout on March 14, 2018 following the mass shooting at Stoneman Douglas. Stay tuned for Nia's, which I'll post soon.
To read DE coverage of Tuesday's outstanding event: https://bit.ly/2zWiDhC
See Something, Say Something by Liana Wallace
You said it was mental a mental illness something wrong wrong like a mother who can’t grieve because the little boy down the street can buy a gun more easily than a pack of cigarettes
Because this is America, And I’ve learned a thing or two about mental illness How it was harvested How the bloody skulls belonging to men of color would be battered against the walls of institutionalized prisons And yet a diagnosis of mental illness is too kind Oh but we are blind to the rifle that kills school children To the riffle and to the white man holding it America says mental illness And mental illness is so real But its use is purely a secret protecting rich to a golden seal The NRA to its profits And human life to a deal
Because guns kill people because guns have been killing my people and their bodies have been piling up on the bottom of the Mississippi river and now babies bodies blood spills over textbooks how many more babies? how many shrieks, and pops and cracks will it take? For you to find a piece of your soul.
Guns have been killing people And there names have been forgotten Medgar Evers, Philando Castile, Trayvon Martin Black lives have never mattered But now it is clear that kindergarteners, that high schoolers Their lives are less valuable than the profit that fills your pockets
In this act you have committed the worst mistake Uniting white and people of color in a blinding frustration After feeding us to crime Immigrants bodies shoved into detention centers Then into communities where light is gone And survival is empty bellies Which you have fed and filled With the guns you sold us guns kill people and you don’t seem to care which communities they kill anymore
It’s come to my attention you intend to save us with more guns Instead of life you force death to fight death Placing guns in the hands of our professors In effort to protect us But all that we need protecting from is you you who do not know the basic laws of light that darkness cannot drive out darkness only light can do that You said thoughts and prayers
Was it thoughts and prayers that you hoped to save us with? you told us to see something say something you said see something say something dear founding fathers our founding fathers did you see this?
When you left scratched into constitution a well regulated militia could you see that barrels of bullets would fly through windows where education was intended could you not see the way a president's clothes would become drenched in blood? his pockets full with each dollar bill that the NRA provided could you not see it?
Have you forgotten the lives Do you not hear their names when you sleep? Can you not hear the bullets that blaze through to take breath Yakez Dajae Scott Beigel Martin Anguiano And those under the age of 10 Do you not hear their laughter being pulled out into blackness Their voices crying this land was made for you in me Charlotte Bacon Ana Greene Noah Pozner Can you not hear them Could you not see this?
You said, said see something say something they say see something say something the school children we see something the college students they see something Emma Gonzales she sees something tomorrow he sees something and we are saying something we are saying something will you say something?
We will organize we will shut down schools we will protest and yell United,
History will tell the story And your true colors will bleed through it’s books And off of the lips of those who refuse to forget We hear stolen lives laughter and we hold it We will not exist in silence we will not live in a world, in a society where human life is worthless
We see something On our founding fathers and on the pockets that keep the rich full
We will continue to say something