Gen Z is leading the call for change in the US

Teens like Keedron Bryant are leading a Generation Z call for social justice.

The 13 year-old from Florida went viral in June after posting a video of himself urging change following incidents of police brutality across the United States.

KEEDRON BRYANT:

"Because of George Floyd and just everything that was happening to George Floyd and to Ahmaud Arbery and Ms. Breonna Taylor - just a lot of racial injustice going on. So that was like the story behind it. We wanted to get a message out there for hope and change...I feel that I'm an activist because I'm doing stuff like the activists would do. Like, spreading messages and fighting for what is right. So, I do believe that."

Virginia teen Naomi Wadler speaks directly to her generation as host of web series Now This Kids - after taking a turn at the microphone at the 2018 March for Our Lives rally.

NAOMI WADLER:

"I feel that it's really important for kids to understand the world around them and consume news in the way that they want to be able to explore their interests. So, it's not just their parents filtering in and out what they should know, but rather what they need to know... I think that valuing everybody's walk of life and letting everybody have a chance to share where they come from and how they think that shaped who they are today is super important. A lot of the time I'll be at an event and I'll be in a room with a lot of adults. And I treat their opinions the way that I would want mine to be treated."

"Non-profit 'Bloom: Empowering the Military Teen' was created by Florida teen Elena Ashburn who started speaking out shortly after the Parkland School shooting.

ELENA ASHBURN SAYING:

"The biggest thing I could say to those who are afraid of using their voice or who are a bit hesitant is just go for it because you never know what's going to happen. Sure, the worst thing that's gonna happen is that you use your voice and you let your opinions be known. Like, that's the worst thing. And I think that that alone is an amazing thing. And the best thing that could happen is that it could spark real change and dialog in your community and into your country. So, I don't think that there's anything bad with expressing your opinions and advocating for what you believe in.

Child psychology experts suggest teenagers have always tried to understand whatever impacts them personally.

But they point to newer factors like greater peer and parental support, along with the role of social media, to explain Gen Z kids' activism.

Video Transcript

[MUSIC - KEEDRON BRYANT, "I JUST WANNA LIVE"]

KEEDRON BRYANT: (SINGING) I just wanna live.

- Teens like Keedron Bryant are leading a Generation Z call for social justice.

KEEDRON BRYANT: (SINGING) Will I live or will I end up dead?

- The 13-year-old from Florida went viral in June after posting a video of himself urging change following incidents of police brutality across the United States.

KEEDRON BRYANT: Because of George Floyd, and just everything that was happening, to George Floyd, and to Ahmaud Arbery, and Miss Breonna Taylor-- just a lot of racial injustices going on. So that was, like, the story behind it. We wanted to get the message out there for hope and change. I feel that I'm a activist, because I'm doing stuff like the activists would do, like spreading messages and fighting for what is right. So I do believe that.

VIRGINIA WADLER: Many kids and families don't have access to the food that they need to grow and be healthy.

- Virginia teen Naomi Wadler speaks directly to her generation as host of web series, "Now This Kid's."

VIRGINIA WADLER: Hi.

CROWD: Hi.

- After taking a turn at the microphone at the 2018 March For Our Lives Rally.

VIRGINIA WADLER: I feel that it's really important for kids to understand the world around them, and consume news in a way that they want to, and be able to explore their interests. So it's not just their parents filtering in and out what they should know, but rather what they need to know. I think that valuing everybody's walk of life, and letting everybody have a chance to share where they come from, and how they think that shaped who they are today is super important.

A lot of the time, I'll be at an event and I'll be in a room with a lot of adults, and I treat their opinions the way that I would want mine to be treated.

- All right, here we go.

- Non-profit Bloom: Empowering the Military Teen was created by Florida teen Elena Ashburn who started speaking out shortly after the Parkland School shooting.

ELENA ASHBURN: Biggest thing I could say to those who are afraid of using their voice, or who are a bit hesitant, is just go for it. Because you never know what's going to happen. Sure, the worst thing that's going to happen is that you use your voice and you let your opinions be known. Like, that's the worst thing. And I think that that alone is an amazing thing. And the best thing that could happen is that it could spark real change and dialogue in your community and in your country. So I don't think that there's anything bad with expressing your opinions and advocating for what you believe in.

[SINGING]

- Child psychology experts suggest teenagers have always tried to understand whatever impacts them personally.

[INTERPOSING VOICES]

- But they point to newer factors like greater peer and parental support.

[MUSIC - KEEDRON BRYANT, "I JUST WANNA LIVE"]

KEEDRON BRYANT: (SINGING) Every day I'm being hunted as prey.

- Along with the role of social media to explain Gen Z kids' activism.

KEEDRON BRYANT: (SINGING) All that I can.