by Carjamin Scott on May 2, 2019 at 10:05 p.m. CST
People who campaign to bring about political or social change are activists. When most people think of activists, they probably picture the ones that we are taught about in history class like Rev. Dr. King and Rosa Parks. While that’s an accurate thought, it is important to recognize modern day activists. From holding state officials accountable, having courageous conversations, reforming gun laws, and encouraging voter participation, here are four modern day activists to follow.
Aftyn Behn is a Statewide Organizer for Indivisible Tennessee. She’s also a co-host of GRITS podcast, and former Engagement Manager for the Tennessee Justice Center. Most recently, she’s made headlines for urging Gov. Bill Lee to demand the resignation of Rep. David Byrd. She staged a multiple day sit in and was ultimately arrested.
Troopers removed protesters who rushed the door of Gov. Bill Lee’s office this morning. Activists are holding a sit-in at the Capitol to demand the resignation of Rep. David Byrd. https://t.co/Y7MGGcGz20 pic.twitter.com/qxDi5UFG49— NewsChannel 5 (@NC5) April 17, 2019
Justin Jones, a Vanderbilt Divinity student and Fisk University graduate, is an outspoken young civil rights activist who went viral after posting a conversation regarding the public education budget.
This afternoon, after the vote to take $ from public ed, we ended up sitting by Rep. Justin Lafferty, Rep. Micah Van Huss, and other state reps at a restaurant in North Nashville. We sought to speak about our concerns since they have continued to ignore folks in the TN Capitol. pic.twitter.com/aUSjFdK5Mv— Justin Jones (@brotherjones_) April 23, 2019
Jones is currently banned from the TN Capitol. House Speaker, Glen Casada, his Chief of Staff, Cade Cothren, and other members of his team are under investigation by the District Attorney for allegedly framing Jones.
Kathryn McRichie is a lead at Mom’s Demand Action, a grassroots movement of Americans demanding reasonable solutions to address our nation’s culture of gun violence.
I am so utterly disappointed in the Tennessee Senate in voting for #SB705. Overwhelmingly Tennesseans, gun instructors, and legislators across the political spectrum oppose this bill. I urge @GovBillLee to veto HB1264/SB705! #tnleg @MomsDemand pic.twitter.com/jzmuW3STDi— KC (@krayoncolorz) May 2, 2019
Timothy Hughes, Senior Project Manager at The Equity Alliance and volunteer with the TN Black Voter project works to increase the number of black and brown voters. He was interviewed by News Channel 5 and shared why he believes that HB1079 and SB971 are voter suppression laws.
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Carjamin Scott can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and you can follow her on twitter @scottcarjie.