This I Believe

erin - Apex, North Carolina
Entered on April 21, 2006
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: children, respect
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A Question Of Youth

Sometimes the world makes you feel young, even if you are old. Everyone has felt the feeling. The world could be one person who laughs in your face when you give an idea or won’t even hear you out because you’re ‘not old enough’. I believe that youth have opinions and ideas capable of changing the world.

The first memorable time I was looked down on for being young was when I was ten, I was in Florida with my mom and we were in an interior design store. They had doorknobs, handles, curtain rods and any other kind of accessories you can fasten to a wall. I browsed around a bit and soon found a seahorse doorknob I loved, but when I suggested making a beach themed bathroom to my mom in order to use the doorknob the sales lady she was talking to laughed, rolled her eyes at me and said:

“No, that’s not a good idea!” My pride was wounded by this comment and I reluctantly put the little seahorse doorknob back on the shelf without showing anyone else. This event of disrespect fueled my beliefs for the first time and let me realize it was not okay for adults to make me feel bad for having ideas.

In the end it wasn’t that my idea was bad, my mother just didn’t want that type of bathroom, still the saleswoman laughed in my face and looked down on me because I was so young. It happens everyday, adults look down on kids and teenagers alike. How many cartoons depict Teenagers as pimple faced, hormone induced, and rebellious youth?

The truth is, I have strong opinions about the same things adults do, infact they might even be stronger because I want to make my voice heard for the first time. I could add so much to the world, fresh ideas about a better society, the passion of my teen years, and the creativity of a new mind being expressed. I only need the chance to express myself.

So why does the world look down on me? Is it because I’m still going through puberty? Still haven’t reached the end of my growth spurt yet? Still haven’t graduated high school? Still haven’t learned to escape the fads of pop-culture? In my opinion the adults of our world need to remember those times they were looked down upon and think for just a moment the next time they say things like:

“Children can’t fall in love.”

“The future is wasted on a generation with no opinions”

“You can’t do that! You’re too young”

“That’s not a good idea!”

Think about it just for a minute and watch out because sooner or later I’m going to say:

“You can’t do that…you’re too old!”