Activism will be the watchword as new administration takes over
The Park Record editorial, Dec. 7-9, 2016
Members of the Standing Rock Sioux tribe this week delivered a powerful lesson in civic engagement as they led a successful protest to halt construction of a crude oil pipeline across their reservation in North Dakota. Hopefully, coverage of the protest and its peaceful outcome will inspire others to become engaged with local and national issues as the new presidential administration takes office next month.
A lot of the issues young adults hold dear, especially here in Park City, may be in jeopardy in the coming years. Based on the resumes of those being nominated to fill leadership roles in Washington, D.C., it looks like their commitment to environmental initiatives, gender equality and cultural diversity will face serious challenges. We hope, like the Sioux, they will be prepared to stand their ground when called for.
There was a time when their grandparents, moms and dads boarded buses to participate in the Civil Rights Movement, marched to stop what they believed to be an unjust war in Viet Nam, fought for women’s rights and demanded regulations to improve air and water quality.
It is time for the next generation to take up that mantle.
Many young adults who grew up in Park City are well prepared to take on those roles. Their schools and the community at large have offered plenty of opportunities to participate in social causes at school clubs and by joining local nonprofits. They have traveled to other parts of the world to help with medical missions, organized a club at school to support students with nontraditional gender identities, launched fundraisers to help underprivileged families and banded together to support their Latino classmates.
And while some say today’s youth are apathetic about politics — in fact, many did not vote — we are counting on them to remain steadfast to their ideals.
Some may already be planning to join the Million Women March in Washington, D.C., on Jan. 21, but there will be plenty to do right here at home, too, as incoming elected and appointed officials begin to roll back environmental and economic regulations and health care reform.
Today’s xGeneration and Millennial citizens have heard enough tales about how their parents riled up the establishment in the old days. Now it is their turn to set the agenda. We’ll be happy to loan them our tie-dyed armbands and rainbow flags.
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Our view: In putting their differences aside and agreeing to share a message of unity and democracy, Spencer Cox and Chris Peterson rose above the mudslinging that has come lately to define our politics.