Choose Our Kids, Not Guns

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In my military career, I had the honor of working with some our nation’s most elite troops. In my post-military career, I helped national organizers set in motion some events that shook the nation. Recently, I have sat in meetings with our local middle and high schoolers as they rise to challenge the vicious status quo of gun regulation in America.

The students had planned to hold a rally at the Capitol at noon on March 24, which was in solidarity with countless other students across the nation. But last week, the Helena students learned a the cynically-titled “March for Our Guns” organizers had reserved it to block the students’ rally. The students charged ahead and found another location in Helena to hold what will hopefully be a massive demonstration of spirit.

But it will demand more than just students. It will demand that I, that you, that we support them. It demands we show the nation we stand in solidarity with students across the nation who want to attend school without having to fear for their lives. We must show these kids we are as fearless as them.

On March 24, Helena will face a choice: either support a rally for weapons of wars that have recently been the key ingredient in mass shootings or the children that will lead the nation in the decades ahead. I choose the students. I stand with my brothers and sisters in Vets for Gun Reform to have the backs of these kids who have shown more bravery than many of us. They deserve more than just a supportive tweet or cheer—they deserve to have us standing by their sides as they get challenged every step of the way.

People march but guns do not.

Support the local students here.

Learn about the March for Our Lives here.

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About the author

Josh Manning

Josh Manning is a combat veteran who lives in Helena. His writing has appeared in Newsweek and Foreign Policy and he has appeared on MSNBC and CNN. He was a primary researcher to the recently published New York Times bestseller "The Plot to Destroy Democracy" by MSNBC analyst Malcolm Nance. He is part of a growing movement of progressive military veterans working to affect political change You can follow him on Twitter @joshuamanning23

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