I am not too young to lead

Published 11:13pm Wednesday, March 27, 2013

She turned around and looked at the three of us — we were decked out in glitter and sequins waiting for our hero to take the stage.

“Your too young to be here,” the 50-something-year-old woman in front us said.

We were 20 rows back at Garret Coliseum from Elton John’s piano, myself and two other Times-Journal reporters last Friday night and we came prepared to sing along to “I’m Still Standing,” “Saturday Night’s Alright For Fighting,” and “Goodbye Yellow Brick Road.”

I guess we did look out of place; everyone around us had grey hair and the people in the row behind us moaned and groaned as we stood up during Sir Elton’s first number and they “couldn’t see.”

It upset me that the grey-haired “Lets just sit and fall asleep during a rock song” crowd thought we were the ones who were acting strange screaming to Elton at the top of our lungs.

It made me think of all the naysayers in our community and around the nation who fear for what will come when my generation takes the reins of society in politics, the corporate world and when we start reproducing.

In Selma I have heard my elders talk of how we text too much and have the attention spans of gnats.

And yes, I will agree there are some qualities of us Facebookers that can drive the elderly up the wall, and we do things that make us appear more stupid than “The Greatest Generation.”

But in Selma especially, I have met so many young people that give me faith and hope that my generation will steer Selma to a better day. My generation is three lines removed from those tough racial days and we were bred in environments where everything we heard on the Disney Channel and Nickelodeon preached acceptance, anti-bullying and loving everyone. Some may say this made us sissies and not tough — but I think it made us even better.

Covering high school events in Selma, I have met and interviewed kids that started their own non-profit organizations, amazing young ladies in pageants and young people involved with Youth Leadership Selma-Dallas County who truly want to step up and make a difference. At the Bridge Crossing Jubilee I met kids much younger than myself fighting for things I’m not sure I can even wrap my head around.

My generation will take what work those from my parent’s generation have done for Selma and expand upon it. Then we will tweet about it, post it on Facebook and even write a blog about it.

So to the lady in front of me and old men behind me at the concert — whether you like it or not, we are the future and we won’t let the “Sun Go Down” on us.

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