Encourage students to voice their opinions

If you and your friends felt strongly about a government bill, would you drive nearly 300 miles to speak with your senators?

That is exactly what students from the University of Idaho did this week. They went to the Statehouse to encourage lawmakers to vote for a bill that would allow women to receive a 12-month supply of prescribed birth control and encourage better sex education in college.

I am impressed these students took action.

I am delighted these students care deeply about their health, and the health of their peers.

I am hopeful that our government officials want to listen to the voice of the people, and represent them accurately.

Several senators listened to the students, even though they disagreed.

Unfortunately, not every senator was respectful to the students. Sen. Dan Foreman was unwilling to meet with the students and canceled their meeting last minute. Instead, he confronted them in the Statehouse hallway and said “I think what you guys do stinks.”

How unfortunate.

The students came to the Statehouse to voice their opinion. They didn’t expect everyone to agree with them. They came to say this bill affects them.

These students were a great example of how to be involved citizens:

  • They learn about the issues that concern them.
  • They talk to their elected officials.
  • They speak up.

We all have different opinions and beliefs. We all come from different backgrounds, different educations and different families. We know we are different. We need to voice our opinion and listen to the opinion of others. Representatives and senators represent the people of Idaho. Their job is to listen to our voice and vote accordingly.

How can we teach our kids to be involved in government if government officials tell them that their opinions and beliefs stink?

Melanie Flake

Melanie Flake

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