Monday evening the March for Our Lives movement hosted a town hall at the Reardon Convention Center on Minnesota Avenue in Kansas City, Kansas, one of fifty or so stops in their Summer voter registration and activation Road to Change bus tour. Students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, from Chicago, from St. Louis, and from the Kansas City metro area joined the town hall panel.
Before the town hall groups of media had the opportunity to speak with small groups of students, each made up of a student from Florida, a student from Chicago or St. Louis, and a student from the Kansas City metro area.
Question: …certainly gun control is what everybody’s been talking about, but this event specifically seems to be targeted more towards voting and, and registering to vote, and the power of the vote. Why is that so important? Why is that the focus here?
Ryan Deitsch: Because even though the issue of gun violence is a strong issue that we face and it’s an issue that most of us have faced personally it is that you just have to be active in the political process to solve any of these problems, whether it’s gun violence, whether it’s education reform, whether it’s, uh, any economic reforms that you want to make. That you have to actually be active, sharing your voice, share who you want to represent you because right now a lot of these people aren’t being represented. We’re able to do that, we’re able to change the world.
Show Me Progress: So, um, as you go through this process of getting people to vote, and, part of the process is once they’re registered to vote, you have to get them to vote, and they have to sustain the vote. So, as you all work towards this are you thinking of a long term strategy to basically, as people get older to keep continuing to have them, encourage them to vote and register younger people?
Ryan Deitsch: I mean I’ll tell you like after the march we weren’t going away, after the Summer tour we’re not going away. We’re gonna consistently be working all the connections we make during the Summer. We’re gonna solidify by the end, we’re gonna make sure that we have group chats, we’re gonna make sure that we’re emailing them. We don’t want to lose these people. Some of these are now my friends. We, we just want to make sure that everybody in the country stays active and make sure they don’t drop the ball.
Show Me Progress: This is a long term project.
Ryan Deitsch: It’s a very long term project. I don’t know when this will end.