My wife is a member of a Toastmasters group and wrote and presented this speech during their meeting this week. I found it so inspirational, especially as we memoralize Dr. Martin Luther King tomorrow, that I wanted to share it with you.

Good Morning Toastmaster, fellow Toastmasters, welcomed guests. My thought of the day relates to our young people. “ttyl”, “lol”, “smh”, what do these abbreviations mean to you? Well, I know when I get one of these unknown abbreviations in a text, I am not afraid to ask my friends what it means.

Do you know what “yolo” means? I was listening to the John Tesh radio show the other day and he mentioned this new abbreviation: “yolo”: “you only live once”. It seems that there is a new trend among young people texting “yolo” before, during and after some sort of reckless behaviour. For example, a young person wrote in a message that he was stunt driving 120 miles/hr with “yolo” in the text, just before he crashed and killed all 5 occupants in the vehicle. Why are our young people so unhappy? Why do some feel that life is disposable?

I would put out a challenge to start a new text trend. My new text abbreviation would be “hope”: “help our people everywhere”. Society needs to find ways to help kill the root cause of our despair. Young people are our future and my hope is that they live long enough to see it, because “yolo”… you only live once. Thank you.

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