Last summer, I got to see this stereotype crushed.
After starting a small pro-life group at my charter school, I was nominated by Students for Life to become a part of their Thaddeus Stevens Fellowship. After my acceptance, they invited me to visit Washington, D.C., and attend the National Leaders Collective. Because of this, on the momentous day of June 24th, over 200 students and I stood on the steps of the Supreme Court; within the hour that Roe V. Wade had been overturned.
Students for Life on June 24th at Lincoln Memorial
The teenagers I met that week were some of the most inspiring, hard working and talented individuals I believe I will ever meet. There were students from various states and types of schools: public, charter, home-school, etc. They were invited because they had demonstrated serious leadership and passion for the cause of life, most commonly through starting their own pro-life club or group in their community. The amount of courage that takes is extremely underestimated! They faced so much backlash, lost "friends", and discovered how cold the differing side can be. However, they persevered. I remember one girl I met, who recounted her story to me of how her school resisted her every effort to establish a pro-life group on campus, and how Students for Life helped her win her case. Another student I met, someone who looked like your typical high school football guy, recounted many beautiful ways he was changing hearts and minds on his campus. A guy who at first look, might be put into the constraints of the stereotype "another teenager that doesn't care". However, he was and still is fighting a harder battle than many adults choose to.
Why were they all in Washington that historical week? Because they cared. Those teenagers will not stop fighting for all humans to be given equal dignity, respect, and rights. If you hear someone say something along the lines of a degrading mantra towards teenagers, ask them what kind of youth they're hanging around. And if you are one of those choosing to fall into society's low expectations for you as a teen, change. Because, speaking for the rest of us- we care.