As I stood selling my papers in Tenleytown, enjoying the jazz that I play through a speaker for passersby, several people carrying signs caught my attention. All were quite intent in reaching their destination. I never even tried to prepare my trusty camera for a picture until, luckily, I caught a glimpse of another from a distance and prepped to stop them.   

The young lady was on a mission like the others — to save themselves and the rest of us from those “Right to Kill” folks. The real liberals that like to freely spread their lead. 

She and her compatriots, or, more aptly, fellow patriots, were joining AU students, Georgetown Day School students and others in protest of the policies, selfishness and/or ignorance that led to the ending of 17 lives in the recent Parkland, Florida, tragedy and too many before it.  

I asked her to indulge me for this picture. It is worth a thousand words to me. It says that the terrorist’s weapons aren’t the guns but the pens. The pens that sign into law the ease with which the guns are obtained by those who would kill their fellow man; the pens that write the lies, er, scripts read by gun lobbyists; the pens that endorse the billions of dollars spent to produce more efficient ways to annihilate our planetary neighbors and the kids down the block. Her sign said 141 American youth have died since the Columbine massacre! And many more Americans have suffered! And continue to suffer. 

More importantly, it says (at least to me), and please pardon my grammar, “Me and my peers are gonna clean up this mess you made by callin’ you out, holding your feet to the fire, and making you stop squandering our resources and OUR LIVES on your greedy interests. It is not your country; it’s our country. You aren’t the future of a America. We are! And we intend to be around to live it!”  

They held their rally and are continuing this honorable pursuit with a March 24 protest march on Washington. I will be there (expecting my two teens in tow), camera-ready this time. Maybe I’ll play my jazz. But otherwise, “playtime is over!” It’s time adults stopped acting like children and behaved with maturity like our children do. 

Photo by Ken Martin