Yes. We dare.
I stand in solidarity with the badass teens who are speaking up and marching to protest gun violence and call for stricter gun control laws across the nation.
In 1998, I was in high school in southern Oregon when the shooting at Thurston High School, which left two students (and the shooter's parents) dead and 25 wounded. I heard the news on the radio in a friend's car, on our way to a school performance. We knew the Thurston kids from theater competitions.
In 2015, I was living in Portland when nine people were killed and nine more were wounded at Umpqua Community College, the place where I took classes and performed in community theater during high school and where friends were teaching.
There have been others, too many others, here and throughout the nation. Ten days ago I sat in a coffee shop and listened to four students at the table behind me write letters to Congress and make signs. It was March 16th and they had walked out of school in protest. I have no doubt they are part of the thousands who march in Portland this morning.
They're changing the world. And they give me hope.
Let's work together to support these young activists any way we can! I know how important it is to feel seen, to have a voice, to be recognized and accepted. Seeing changes lives. So, from March 24 - April 20 (National School Walkout) I am having a portrait session giveaway. Senior portraits? Teens who need a portrait for their blogs or social media? Nominate your kids, yourself, your friends - any teenager within an hour of the Portland Metro Area or in Roseburg/Umpqua/Glide.
Submit a paragraph about who the person is and why they need a free portrait session and images - just use my contact form on the website. I'd love to feature some of these stories on my blog and social media as well! With the help of a local panel of educators, artists, and activists, I'll select one teenage student to photograph in April or May.
"Do I dare / Disturb the universe?" - TS Elliot from "The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock"
Let's disturb the universe.