Courtesy photo
Alyssa Richmond, shown with her parents and members of the Hawthorne VFW Post 2414, took second place in the state VFW speech contest.

Mineral County High School senior, Alyssa Richmond, entered the VFW Post 2414 “Voice of Democracy” speech contest. Her entry was chosen to represent Post 2414 in the state contest.

Here, Richmond placed runner-up.

Her speech talks about the privileges that American citizens have, such as religion and free thinking.

Richmond writes, “Freedom is my right to be me and anyone else’s right to be who they want to be. It’s something that can never be taken away as long as we, America’s citizens, uphold our responsibilities.”

She continues, “My responsibility to America is similar to any other citizens’ in most aspects. Our main goal is to benefit society so we continue to grow as a nation. To accomplish that we must perform other actions: help others when they need help, pay taxes on goods and services and vote with the greater good in mind. Lastly, we need to have faith that the government will take care of its people, even if their ideas differ from the masses.”

Richmond, whose family comes from Hawthorne, has been accepted to the University of Nevada – Reno. She knows that she has been given opportunities to get an education and hopes to continue to learn.

“America was created with the goal in mind of equality. That everyone should have the opportunity to speak out when thing aren’t fair. Which is why, as I learn more about the past I wonder about the future. How far will we have to go to protect our freedoms? Would our founding fathers be proud of what we’ve become? Will we ever accept our differences and learn to think well always protect our own and help when people ask, and that our ancestors would be astonished at the progress we’ve made towards unity.”

These questions, asked by a high school young lady are questioned daily by adults. At this time, Richmond is still unable to vote, but states that she will one day.

“Because I’m an American and want to change the world,” she concluded.