Havana sits outside her school as the only participant in last year's National School Walkout. Photo by her mom.
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Among young people and so many others enraged at the failure of Democratic functionaries to approve a climate debate as the planet burns is Havana Chapman-Edwards, an 8-year-old African-American powerhouse who argues, "We can’t make our world strong if we leave people behind." Fighting climate change isn't even her first rodeo: At seven, she was the only kid at her school in Alexandria, VA. to join last year's National School Walkout for gun control, acting on behalf of young African-American girls who are too often victims of gun violence, and of her cousin Tony, another victim. "Adults and lawmakers aren’t fighting for us, so we have to fight for ourselves," she said at the time. "All girls can change the world, but Black girls are the ones who have always fought the hardest because we had no choice." The daughter of an international teacher mother and Air Force father who has traveled widely and lived in five countries, she's also raised money to buy books for "children who look like me" and for girls in a Ghana orphanage: "These girls need books so that they can take pride in who they are and know that they are more than capable of being anything they put their minds to." Oh yeah, she's also on Twitter as @TheTinyDiplomat.
"If your dream is only about you, it's too small." - Havana Chapman-Edwards