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Fifty years ago the U.S. was deep into the Vietnam War. Over 27,000 soldiers lost their lives in 1968 in a place most couldn’t have found on a map before they got there. Those who were being called upon to make that sacrifice started to question why. And there were no good answers. So they took matters into their own hands and took to the streets in protest. They changed the debate.

Valentine’s Day 2018, 17 people went to school just like they’d done the day before. But this day was different because Nikolas Cruz decided to go to school with his AR-15. While Nikolas ended the lives of those 17 people and changed the lives of their families, friends and classmates forever, what didn’t change was our response. We’d been there many times before so we knew the drill. We’re outraged, we offer prayers and sympathy, we have listening sessions and we promise change. History says that is all we are going to do.

But this time it just might be different. The survivors have been to Tallahassee and Washington. They’ve been on national TV and they’re taking on the NRA. They are registering to vote and promising to take on the do-nothing politicians. And they’re taking to the streets and asking their classmates all over the nation to join them. It is starting to feel like 1968 all over again. I wish them the greatest success and I’m looking for my walking shoes.

Art Foeste