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Temple Sinai Youth Group President, Jesse Aseoff

04/11/2018 01:03:26 PM



First of all I want to introduce myself. I’m Jesse Aseoff, and I’m currently the President of Temple Sinai Youth Group. Rabbi Rheins invited TSYG up on the bema tonight to talk about some of our experiences, opinions, and responses to the recent issues and tragedies involving gun violence. After I say a few quick words, I’m going to hand it over Julia Teitell, our Youth Director and then Logan Samuels, our Social Action Vice President, who will go more in depth about the issue itself and what TSYG specifically has done in response.


The Parkland shooting in Florida left us all shocked. What scares me personally is how similar that school is to my own, Cherry Creek. As scary as it is to think, this type of tragedy could happen anywhere. Luckily through Temple Sinai Youth Group and members of our larger group NFTY from all across the country, I have not only learned a tremendous amount in regards to gun violence prevention, but I’ve also developed a strong community where we can effectively work together to discuss issues and enact change.


I’d like to read something one of TSYGs 8th graders Rena Zucker wrote:

Guns can kill people. So do cars. That’s why we don’t have children driving. The point of cars and driving is to make it around without having to walk everywhere. The point of guns is to physically harm someone or something. Whether or not it’s to be safe, or hunt, or straight up kill someone, it’s not a safe object to play around with. Guns do have an important impact and sometimes can be useful, but by no means does that mean that anyone should be able to purchase them with the swipe of a card. There should be various background checks, more than just marking if there is no history of violence or mental health issues. I believe that guns should be under safe control and with people who will do safe things with them. I apologize that I am not able to be here and present this myself, as I am getting ready to leave for the eighth grade dc trip. Thank you.

The recent emphasis on Gun violence has allowed me to see NFTY through a new lense. On March 14, students from all around the country walked out of their classes and came together to speak out for gun control, as well as honor the lives that were lost in the recent shooting. What amazes me most is that off of the top of my head, I know 10 students from NFTY alone who planned, organized, and ran these walkouts. It’s unbelievable what we as teens can do when we come together and work for change. Although most of us cannot vote yet, we encourage everyone out there to register early. We may not be the final decision makers now, but we are the future decision makers. There is an issue right in front of us and we want to put it front and center and not to be forgotten. There is no good reason that 2,647 youth die from gun violence every year. There is no good reason to allow just anyone to get guns. It is simply to easy and we must change that.

On behalf of Temple Sinai Youth Group, NFTY Missouri Valley, and NFTY North America, I ask all of you to join us in the fight. Reach out to local senators to push laws that will keep children around the country safe, educate others and spread the information you know, and come march with us tomorrow downtown at the March for our lives. We will continue as long as it takes. Until our peers, our friends, and our loved ones are safe, we will continue in this fight. Thank you so much!

Tue, September 29 2020 11 Tishrei 5781