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Apathy

I have been told many times that teenagers are the future of our nation. My generation will be faced with solving global warming, the energy crisis, and hundreds of other challenges that will arise as we take hold of the nation. What worries me most about all of those issues is the fact that my generation suffers from something of enormous consequence: apathy. No matter what the problems—or the potential of my fellow teenagers—if we do not care enough to know the question, we cannot find the answer. I do not want us to come to awareness only after the damage done is irreparable, only to be left thinking of the past and wishing we could have acted sooner.
I witness apathy every day at my high school of approximately 3,000 students. My school is located in a suburb of Houston, called Deer Park. Because I write for the school newspaper, I have to stay aware of the goings-on in our nation, and how those concerns are relevant to my audience. We rarely write about national events because our staff comes to the same conclusion every time: our peers will not care about them. However, starting with our second issue of the school paper, we have started putting brief news updates about national and international events, in hopes of introducing our audience to the outside world’s struggles.
We are coming to the age where we can predict (ever so slightly) what problems we will face in the future because of our current actions, and are acquiring the technologies to fix these problems. The only way to start finding any solutions, however, is to have teenagers connect with the issues. As a writer, and more importantly, as a human being, I do my best to open my peers’ eyes to the problems we face.
This affects me for many reasons. I know that in order for the United States of America to be a competitive nation in the global economy and workforce, we must be an educated people, and this encompasses being aware of problems in our country and the world around us. I do not want apathy to become so closely linked with the teenage mentality that it becomes a stereotype, nor do I ever want to be labeled as such. I know that my generation has great potential, and more room to express it than ever—with greater gender equality, many available forms of educating ourselves, and easy access to information—and I do not want all of the potential to go to waste.
Some of the problems we are facing need to be addressed now. We are at a crucial stage for solving problems like Ozone-depletion and global warming, and we owe it to ourselves, and the planet, to find solutions. Action is necessary at this time in our history, and I want ours to be an active generation, not an apathetic one.



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