‘Twas the time for New Voices

‘Twas the night before Christmas, and all through the nation
High schools paused in writing some new legislation
Those hard at work took a much-needed break
But they’d return to it soon, for so much is at stake.

The New Voices Campaign is beginning to gain traction
It’s starting to spread; it’s starting to be in fashion
The hope is to get free press for all
Which means talking to legislators and creating a law

This campaign has been successful in 10 different states
But there’s still much to be done, hopefully at faster rates
The freedom of expression is an important right
It’s something we must fight for every day and every night

Sixteen other states have active campaigns
But 24 states haven’t even started making gains
Hopefully with time, they’ll participate, too
Because the First Amendment should be important to each one of you

High school journalists shouldn’t be subject to censorship
Practicing restrictions and prior review just isn’t hip
How can you create journalists with experience and knowledge
If you won’t even prepare them with real practice until college?

Something must be done to correct this great wrong
Since the Hazelwood decision, this has been overdue for too long
Support your students and teachers this year
Talk to your reps, tell them what you’ve read here

So when Christmas Eve comes, and you’re waiting for St. Nick
Go ahead and make a final request really quick
Ask for the legislation in each state to pass
So students can get something out of their journalism class

There are a number of schools that are doing things right,
But let’s get the nation to be united in this fight
Remember Tinker v Des Moines and the gains that were seen
Let’s cure Hazelwood in 2017!