I was oft silenced, owing to my perceived lack of knowledge, by elders with an open display of choking ignorance. My opinions were ignored, my ability to speak criticized and my persona classified as blossoming and therefore, its traits irrelevant. Somehow, it became clear as to why our country has failed to produce enough men and women who’ll take a stand when the need arises: we were humiliated whenever we took one because, supposedly, there was an age when our opinions would suddenly start to matter. Unfortunately, that age never arrived. Silenced boys and girls transformed into mute men and women, who could only be ostracized, but had lost the ability to take a stand against the same.
When we stop speaking, we stop thinking. Young men and women, devoid of vision, lead to a country where no one dreams big enough for a revolution to occur. Thus, what happens today paves the path for tyranny to continue undeterred, with citizens who have lost the ability to adequately express themselves, owing to having been silenced when they had just started to speak.
It is important to allow the self-expression and opinions of the youth as they will lead the country one day.
If you have a child who has opinions, DO NOT silence them. Do not tell them that they are not supposed to think about affairs that do not concern them. If they are a citizen of the country, every single thing concerns her existence. They are allowed to have opinions about politics, voting, social crimes, and the like. They are allowed to have an opinion on the economy. They are allowed to think about spirituality. They are allowed to think about nothing and everything.
Today’s world does not lack in leaders, but in visionaries. The world that my fellow people along with me will inherit does not prepare us to have a vision for ourselves that we would like to see come true. So normalized is the ability to go with the flow that nobody seems to think as to where the flow commences from and why it flows in the direction it does. It hurts me deeply that most toddlers I speak to are content with having their peers decide their future for them.
Kids aren’t wish-fulfilling machines, but figures in which parents are supposed to encourage the development of a strong personality. That will not happen until we encourage differences on all bases- whether in terms of opinions or beliefs. However, this should not be interpreted as absolute freedom, for parents cannot neglect their individual responsibilities to correct them when they go wrong. The message I intend to get across is that we need to teach them how to think and then set them free, as far as freedom is fathomed.
Young people with dreams become citizens with vision. The world is in dire need of individuals willing to base their actions on the principles of responsibility, sincerity, discipline, and above all, progress. This need will continue to be unfulfilled until we refuse to encourage our youth to speak and to be heard. It is youth that revolutionizes society. Let us all come forward in preventing youth from being a waste.