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David Berliner shook everyone out of their lethargy and state of shock by proposing a national teachers' strike. Many people loved the idea, but more than a few teachers pointed out that they would be fired if they went out on strike. Lots of people came up with alternatives. Some wanted to exclude elementary schools, but they too have suffered. Some wanted actions that took place when school was not in session, but that was like a strike on weekends. It quickly became clear that we would get nowhere if we tried to settle on one plan that was acceptable to everyone. In the end, those of us who wanted action realized that communities should crowdsource their protests and coordinate locally. There was no good reason to impose a one-size-fits-all plan on everyone.
And so we turn to you to do what is most effective for your schoool and your community. But make it loud and bold!
What matters most is to organize, plan, raise your voices, and make sure your legislators hear you.
Don't settle for thoughts and prayers. Don't settle for bland promises about mental health services (that are being cut). We need real change. We need to learn from nations that don't tolerate gun violence. In the five years since the massacre of first graders and staff at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, there have been "at least 239 school shootings nationwide. In those episodes, 438 people were shot, 138 of whom were killed." (New York Times) This slaughter of children must stop!
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