Youth are the future of humanity, says Benton Harbor minister

Rev. Edward Pinkney at his welcome home from prison dinner. His work, whether in prison helping young inmates or out in the community, has been based on an understanding that youth are our future.


BENTON HARBOR, MI —Let the truth be told. I was surprised and shocked in reference to the Benton Harbor school system: that a system controlled by Whirlpool Corporation would even allow the students to protest.

After the travesty of yet another mass shooting, once again a school has riveted the attention of the nation. It was not just the extent of the carnage with 17 lives lost in Florida, but also the unexpected and unstoppable response of the youth in Benton Harbor, MI, and around the country.

The students even in the sixth grade now understand. They have put the politicians all the way up to Trump on notice and called out to end the gun violence that is rampant in America and a sick society that allows for the slaughter of innocents to preserve and increase the profitability of arms manufacturers. The National rifle Association (NRA) dictates to the politicians and its money lobbyists. Who the politicians will support is the real test that the indignant youth are utilizing to measure if our leaders are for us or against us. It is unfortunate that they will find out the elected leaders are not for them. It is all about money.

The NRA is a very rich and powerful organization that politicians bow down to. Founded in 1871, worth more than $433 million, headquartered in Fairfax, VA. It’s CEO is Wayne La Pierre. It was co-founded by William Conant Church and George Wood Wingate. You will not get a politician to go against the NRA.

The protest in Benton Harbor was so important—just to see the students marching and standing up for something right across the street from my home, holding signs that said stop the NRA. The youth, the students were at the forefront of the protest. The students were saying no more disposable people, no more youth in body bags, no more deportees, no more people kicked to the curb, and no more homelessness. No more poverty.

We must stand by our youth and support them, defend them, and protect them. They are the future of humanity. We, the residents of Benton Harbor, Michigan, should be very proud of our youth, who are taking on the very powerful National Rifle Association.

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