BY ALEC MINASSIAN
The students of Holy Martyrs Ferrahian High School had the unique opportunity to deliberate in a Student Town Hall with Congressman Brad Sherman, who represents California’s San Fernando Valley. Rep. Sherman paid a visit to the school on Wednesday, January 22, three months after the historic passage of House Resolution 296, affirming the United States acceptance of the Armenian Genocide in Congress.
Through a series of questions proposed by students from 9th through 12th grades, Congressman Sherman addressed unresolved issues regarding the impacts of the homelessness crisis, federal and military spending, American foreign policy, and the recent impeachment of an American president. As such, the students were eager to make a conscious effort of staying involved in local, state, and national politics, while pressing the congressman on the relevant topics of Genocide denial, Azeri indifference to border control, and his personal desires to amend this country’s broken stance on Genocide recognition.
Rep. Sherman informed the students on the work he’s accomplished in Washington, D.C. and commented on a wide array of the political and social hardships he faced in attempts to advocate for the well-being of his district’s minorities. Additionally, he commented on the partisan, biased Senate impeachment hearings to come in the following weeks, amplifying the already dire conditions associated with impeaching a president. Congressman Sherman appeals to the minority population of his district and the entirety of the state, and he advocates for more efficient public transportation, well-balanced foreign policy, an emphasis on ensuring women’s reproductive rights, and an open, bipartisan approach to legislative matters from local, state, or federal lawmakers.
The Congressman assured the students of Ferrahian High School that the work they do at school does not go unnoticed by influential lawmakers on Capitol Hill and proved how effective unity, consolidation, and strength can be when yearning for a goal that will better us collectively as Armenians in the diaspora.
Alec Minassian is a junior at Holy Martyrs Ferrahian High School.