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Teenage Pakistani education advocate Malala Yousufzai once told al-Jazeera TV, "If this new generation is not given pens, they will be given guns by terrorists." On October 10, Yousufzai was shot and critically wounded by Taliban assailants.

The attack prompted an international outcry because of her brave exposure of everyday life under Taliban oppression. Her revealing blog and support of children's rights made her a hero to young women seeking empowerment through learning— and an enemy of the Taliban, who strongly oppose education for women.

Former U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton said the "attack reminds us of the challenges that girls face, whether it is poverty or marginalization or even violence just for speaking out for their basic rights."

Sign the petition: Urge current Secretary of State John Kerry to continue supporting young women's right to actively pursue an education without violence.

Sign Here

Dear Secretary Kerry:

As you are well-aware, 14-year-old Pakistani education advocate and activist-blogger Malala Yousufzai was wounded in late 2012 by bullets fired from the weapons of militant Taliban assailants. This attack was motivated by religious extremism and has prompted an international outcry among human rights advocates. The Tehreek-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) claimed responsibility for the shooting and stated that the incident should serve as a warning to other children who participate in "secular-minded" activities.

Yousufzai's tireless bravery in exposing the difficulties of living in the oppressive shadow of the Taliban is something to be applauded, and her desire to document that oppression is a right that should be protected. The harrowing, illuminating BBC blog she started at the age of 11 and her support of children's rights have inspired her peers and raised awareness around the dangerous obstacles these young Pakistani women face.

Tragically, the very acts that have made her a positive role model for young women rendered her an enemy of the Taliban, who strongly oppose schooling for women. In addition to possessing a healthy intellectual hunger, Yousafzai wants her generation to distance themselves from the cycle of violence that has plagued her homeland. As she once told al-Jazeera television, "The people of this nation are not terrorists. If this new generation is not given pens, they will be given guns by terrorists."

The shooting of Yousufzai is an atrocity on several critical levels. Violent acts against women of all ages in Pakistan are increasing with unsettling regularity, and the use of deadly force against a child is particularly barbaric. On a global, humanitarian scale, the attempt to silence the articulate voice of an ambitious young activist, author, and scholar is an affront to all who value the individual right to access the empowerment an education affords.

Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton publicly and passionately condemned these actions. Please continue to do all you can to speak out against these atrocities and further pressure the Pakistani government to protect and support freedom of education for their nation's next generation of leaders.

Petition Signatures

Aug 29, 2016 Linda Wheeldon
Aug 28, 2016 Raleigh koritz
Aug 28, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Aug 27, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Aug 25, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Aug 23, 2016 Debra Dragonheart
Aug 23, 2016 Sandra Hazenberg
Aug 19, 2016 Mayara Andressa
Aug 14, 2016 Amy Christenson
Aug 14, 2016 kristin sullivan
Aug 14, 2016 Debra Yanko
Aug 14, 2016 merrilee roberts
Aug 14, 2016 Blaze Bhence
Aug 12, 2016 Jessica Bailey
Aug 9, 2016 Diana Noel-Labieniec
Aug 7, 2016 Michelle Howe
Aug 5, 2016 Raphaël PONCE
Aug 3, 2016 Ruth Dreyer
Aug 2, 2016 Chloe Cottingham
Jul 31, 2016 Kathy Smith
Jul 29, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Jul 27, 2016 Kathryn Gallagher
Jul 18, 2016 Rosa Pereira
Jul 17, 2016 casey muhs
Jul 17, 2016 Marga Childs
Jul 16, 2016 Debra Wilhoit
Jul 16, 2016 Pamela Justice
Jul 16, 2016 Joan Daniel All children should be able to have education. And a safe home and love.
Jul 15, 2016 Ruth Jacob
Jul 12, 2016 Andrea Rematore
Jul 10, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Jul 6, 2016 Margaret Randall
Jul 5, 2016 Dat Tran
Jul 4, 2016 Paola Moretti
Jul 4, 2016 Kelly Irwin
Jul 3, 2016 Matthew Taylor The world is male dominated, women cannot be expected to carry out an equal role to their male counterparts without an equal education and opportunity set. A more egalitarian world opens doors for both genders and allows respect and human love to flow.
Jul 3, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Jun 30, 2016 Fran Reyes
Jun 30, 2016 JoAnn Evans
Jun 29, 2016 Monica Harper
Jun 29, 2016 judy hubbard
Jun 27, 2016 Julie Bennett
Jun 26, 2016 Natalie Bieniarz
Jun 26, 2016 Dean OBrien
Jun 24, 2016 Hillary Wehrle
Jun 23, 2016 Clayton Barbeau
Jun 20, 2016 Becky Bunch
Jun 20, 2016 Andrea Galantini
Jun 19, 2016 Joan Welte
Jun 18, 2016 Janice James

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