Teen Violenceby Virginia Springmeyer, Aztec, NMThere has been an overwhelming amount of senseless violence in our country these past few months, especially in small-town schools, with teens going on rampage and killing classmates and teachers. What has happened to our society that this can happen, let alone happen so frequently? The answer is that our generation does not seem to respect anything,We talk back to teachers, parents, and adults in general. The scary thing is these same adults usually stick up for us and say things like, "It's just a phase he's going through," or "That's just the way teenagers are today." Wake up and smell the gourmet cappuccino! There is absolutely no reason why we should not respect our elders. How many times have you or your friends complained about adults not respecting you and your rights? It is not because they "just don't understand." It is because a person cannot expect to receive trust and respect without first giving a little. Not only do we need to learn to respect our elders, but we also need to develop respect for sacred things, such as life. Just because my boyfriend dumps me to go to the prom with another girl doesn't mean I have the right to shoot my friends and classmates with a sawed-off shotgun. Life is precious; no human has the right to take that from another.My heart goes out to the people and their families who have been hurt by this latest rash of senseless violence and killings. I apologize for my generation, because it seems no matter how hard we try to show the world our good side, all that shows through are negative aspects. We need to try hard to do what we should. I am tired of getting stereotyped as a bad person simply because I am a teenager. Not even a majority of us are truly "rotten seeds," but how can adults be expected to see all that is good about us when we refuse to do the little things? Little things like listening and respecting our parents' opinion can make a huge difference. So please, on behalf of all of us, try to show adults, peers, and life a little respect so that we are not labeled the generation that throws deadly tantrums. ?
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.