A brave and courageous student delivered a powerful and convicting speech to classmates last week at one of the thousands of walk-out protests that took place at schools across America to campaign for stricter gun laws.
The girl, high school sophomore Angelica Mansfield, urged her peers at Moses Lake High School in Washington to stop bullying those who are different, especially those who might be at a higher risk for violent outbursts.
“We’re out here for a shooting, school shootings,” she said. “These are happening from these kids that you guys are cornering out, that you are bullying, doing stuff too, because you think it’s funny. It’s not funny.”
The bold teen said that many students are picked on for simply being themselves.
“You’re here to learn, you’re not here to bully,” she remarked. “Kids shouldn’t be shooting up schools. We’re teenagers!”
Angelica then passionately declared, “You should say that you love your neighbor. Be there for them, sit with them at lunch. Tell them that you’re their friend, that you’re gonna be there for them whenever they need you.”
Posted by IJR Red Presents on Friday, March 16, 2018
“I don’t see why it’s so hard to be nice, and care and love each other. It’s not hard,” she added.
“I know some of you are gonna laugh and look at me like I’m stupid. But I don’t care because somebody said something while we’re out here. Somebody stood up.”
Angelica ended her speech with a heartfelt message to everyone present:
“I just wanted to say that. I love all of you guys. I care about all of you.”
In an interview with iFiber One News, Angelica said that the was the only person to stand up and address the crowd during the March 14 protest.
“It was really last minute,” she explained. “I’ve always wanted to do something like that. I’ve always had the passion and really wanted to say something. The night before I had heard about it, and I woke up that morning and I was like ‘should I do this, should I really go?’”
After around 200 students made their way out to the school’s courtyard, Angelica quickly realized that nothing was going to happen. Most of the kids were chatting, while a few stared at their phones. That’s when she decided it was time to speak.
“As soon as I was done a girl came up and she hugged me and started crying, telling me she wanted to say all this stuff but she couldn’t, and so many other kids told me that,” Angelica explained. “I was like ‘you have a voice, you can say this.’ Just one person, if one person can be moved and changed by the words that are coming out of my mouth, that’s fine with me. I know that if I can change or help one person, or make them feel like they have a voice, then it’s only going to go from there.”
Angelica again urged people to start looking at the root cause of these horrific shootings and says more young people should be speaking up about this.
“I have a voice and I’m not scared to use it,” she said. “Think about our kids, don’t think about our guns. I know you guys say it’s a gun problem but think to the real source, it has to start somewhere.”
(H/T: H/T: IJR Red)