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Our world has become a dangerous place. It harbors hate, anger and violence, right alongside people who will use these emotions against their own neighbors. The media occasionally fails to cover the truth regarding hate crimes, especially when these acts are also attached to feelings of bigotry or bias.

Acceptance, in a free nation, is surprisingly hard to come by. While it is not feasible to imagine that everyone in the world, or even in a single country, will have the same viewpoints on various issues, there needs to be a point where we set aside our differences, and coexist without attacking others for how they may feel.

We can all hold our own truths, but one person’s values are not more valid than another’s. There are some lines, still, that should never be crossed. It is one thing to judge someone’s opinion, but it is another to break a moral code, and go so far as to attack another human being for circumstances that are out of their control.

As a teenager, one has very limited opportunities to make a statement. The world will tell them to grow up, to develop their own free will and thoughtful opinions, and perhaps even encourage them to speak out. They are the future, right? Well, when they do speak out, it does not take long for someone who disagrees with them to shut them down. These haters will say that teenagers are too young and foolish to understand the issues they are speaking about. In some cases, that may be true, but you cannot have it both ways. You cannot ask them to take a stand, and then tear them down a few moments later.

So, how do the teenagers handle this predicament? They turn to a platform where they can speak freely, but also share their views with as many people as possible. In the past few years, social media has gotten bigger than ever. It allows us to share news all over the world, within just a few seconds. Teens control the majority of the social media platforms, considering the fact that they make up most of the social media population. What better way to speak your mind?

This generation of teens, as well as young adults, is angry. We all want our world to face some big changes, and as we are always told, we are the future. It is our responsibility, now, to decide what we want to change some day, and what needs to be done to make it happen. Social media is a place for us to protest injustice, and find others who share our views, even though they may live hours away.

Overall, the media lately has shown us some very gruesome things. A nation never wants to watch as officers of the law get away with taking innocent lives, or see their cities burning, as a symbol of protest. People should not have to fear for their lives, especially not in their own homes. While violence needs to stop, taking action and speaking your mind on social media is a great way to express your concerns.

Many things in life need to be mended or updated to keep running smoothly, and the same can certainly be said about our nation. There will always be conflict, but it definitely does not have to be at the degree of intensity that it is now. It is clear that changes do need to be made, and change can start with one small voice. Register to vote, educate yourself on things that may not affect your life directly, but do affect others, and fight for justice. Most importantly, use your voice.

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