Youth organizing is more than kids meeting a few times and talking about things they don’t like.

It’s calculated and structured. It’s planning and planning until you think you have everything down to a T, just to realize that there’s more to do. It’s collaborating with people all across your city, and keeping the connection to ensure people stay motivated. It’s researching and reading all kinds of political jargon just to be able to relay it in an effective way to your peers. It’s meeting after meeting, often sleepless nights, days lived off coffee and pizza. It’s hate mail and death threats from close-minded adults, and getting taunted by the very people you’re fighting for. It’s the glory of waking up and realizing that all your blood, sweat, and tears meant something because a few of your demands were met, and then realizing the next steps to make sure the other ones are met, too.

Organizing isn’t some fun pastime. It’s a lifestyle. A commitment. It’s my life. And until April 12, I wondered if it was really the life I wanted to live.

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