As the first Gen Z and Afro - Cuban congressman, Representative Maxwell Alejandro Frost of “Florida 10th congressional district”, is a historic figure who has contributed to a new wave of grassroots activist policymakers who use social media and other spaces to advocate for a litany of issues especially gun control and abortion rights. Also, as an activist for voting rights, Frost has been instrumental in bolstering college students’ voter registration and overall participation in both primaries and general elections leading to his own election victory. With the emergence of increased youth activism in the increasingly common wake of school shootings like Parkland and Uvalde, greater public scrutiny must be applied upon our elected officials ensuring sensible gun safety measures are passed preventing the seemingly unending onslaught of gun violence. While political inaction is the symptom of a greater issue of political corruption, there must be greater shame placed on the National Rifle Association which has predominantly levied its immense monetary, social, and political capital to challenge any and all efforts to reform US gun policy. After the tragedy of Parkland in February 2018, Frost and others were instrumental in the formation of March for Our Lives, a student-led organization seeking to end gun violence in schools. Also, as the representative for Florida’s 10th Congressional District encompassing the city of Orlando, Frost’s constituency includes those whose family members perished during the Pulse nightclub killing 50 people and leading to a three hour standoff with authorities. In fact, in the very beginning of 2023 alone (roughly 64 days), there have been alarmingly 80 mass shootings already, outpacing 2022 figures rapidly.
Still at the forefront of the campaign to legislate lasting gun policy reform, Frost and including others like Rep. Lucy McBath, whose son Jordan was the victim of gun violence, is demanding the passage of legislation restoring an assault weapons ban first enacted under the Clinton Administration. In the immediate wake of shootings at Michigan State University and Half Moon Bay in Monterey Park, California, there must be not only increased public awareness of the omnipresent nature of gun violence and the importance of swift reform as the fate of our communities and basic safety is very much at stake.
Only through urgent and diligent gun reform, our nation can achieve any semblance of normalcy in terms of our relationship with guns and public safety. As a young person who has lived through the Oxford, Parkland, and Uvalde school shootings and remained frustrated with political inaction and corruption.
I see our greatest current path to the success of gun control reforms is through grassroots activism, increased electoral participation in both voting and elections, and other peaceful yet direct demands for change. As a March for Our Lives organizer and political activist, Frost is skilled at gathering support for issues like universal background checks, red flag laws and assault weapons bans which have garnered broad public support. But, despite the mounting work for America’s youth, as institutional leadership has remained silent and indifferent, I am confident that Generation Z, through leadership like freshman Rep. Maxwell Alejandro Frost, can accomplish decades long work to reign in lax gun regulations by increasing the volume of gun control proponents in Congress and ensuring public life can be free from the increasingly dangerous epidemic of gun violence through the passage of crucial policies like an assault weapons ban and universal background checks.