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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.

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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


Dec 5, 2016 Roman Marek
Dec 5, 2016 Agnieszka Marek
Dec 5, 2016 Szymon Marek
Dec 4, 2016 Sharon Sutton
Dec 3, 2016 Angelina Faggion
Nov 25, 2016 natasha liff
Nov 24, 2016 Sissel Frettim
Nov 21, 2016 K Zoll
Nov 19, 2016 Jan Marek
Nov 16, 2016 Heather Hinkle
Nov 16, 2016 Martine Macmillan
Nov 15, 2016 Marsha Croner
Nov 15, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Nov 11, 2016 Cynthia Santiago
Nov 10, 2016 Eve Delmonte
Nov 10, 2016 Libby esther berman
Nov 10, 2016 Thao Vu
Nov 7, 2016 Lily Cohen
Nov 7, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Nov 4, 2016 Sue King
Nov 2, 2016 Gen Agustsson
Oct 31, 2016 Denise Bailey
Oct 31, 2016 marilyn karwoski
Oct 30, 2016 mary first She needs her education without any problems. Let her have it NOW!
Oct 30, 2016 Elaine alegaki
Oct 28, 2016 Holli DuShane
Oct 26, 2016 Russell Knock
Oct 26, 2016 Elaine Heathcoat
Oct 24, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Oct 24, 2016 Ricardo Cottrell
Oct 24, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Oct 22, 2016 Margarita Contreras
Oct 21, 2016 MARY EMERICH
Oct 20, 2016 Batya Harlow
Oct 19, 2016 Joe Pallon
Oct 19, 2016 OSVALDO TOMAS
Oct 19, 2016 Kathleen Buda-Gozy
Oct 18, 2016 Henry Mongrain
Oct 18, 2016 Margot Orton
Oct 18, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Oct 12, 2016 Beverly Leath
Oct 12, 2016 Alicia .L. Denofrio
Oct 10, 2016 Petra Jones
Oct 10, 2016 Sheila Gibson
Oct 1, 2016 Allen Vergakis
Sep 27, 2016 John Little
Sep 26, 2016 (Name not displayed)
Sep 22, 2016 Carole Kubik
Sep 22, 2016 Charmaine MacDonald
Sep 21, 2016 Lorri Goldman

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