Lazy, disrespectful and unaware of the world are some perceptions adults have toward today's youth.
Whether those perceptions are accurate depends on the child or teen. However, we live in a world where perception is reality. Perception often paints a picture of disenfranchised youth, running amuck with little regard toward others.
But here's the good part.
It's those kind of perceptions which makes recent reality that much more enjoyable, as some youths are proving them wrong.
You have Moffat County High School seniors-to-be Emily Norris and Tanya Rinehart, who recently finished their competition at the National Forensic League's national tournament in Wichita and Derby, Kan.
It's not just that they were the first Bulldogs to make it to the national tournament in six years, but also the route they took.
Many of the Colorado competitors often used comedy pieces at the tournaments, but Norris and Rinehart focused on a more serious subject, competing in the duo interpretation category with a 10-minute adaptation of the documentary-play "The Laramie Project." The play chronicles reaction to the murder of Matthew Shepard, who was fatally attacked in October 1998 in a crime widely reported as a homosexual hate crime.
Presenting a more serious subject helped the duo make nationals, where they saw other youths with offer daring pieces as well.
"They seem to grasp the concept that there's a whole world out there," Rinehart said.
Craig teenager Ari Osborn was a daring youth in his own right. The 17-year-old home school student was honored with the Congressional Award - the only civilian award given by Congress - on June 19 in Washington, D.C.
All this youth did was put in 1,650 volunteer hours toward public service, 1,023 hours of personal development, 397 hours of physical fitness and four consecutive nights of exploring Colorado's outdoors.
Then there were the two teens who made a pit stop in Craig during the weekend on their "March for Peace," which started in San Francisco and is scheduled to end in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 11.
Michael Israel of Jackson Calif., and Ashley Casale of Connecticut are planning to walk 3,000 miles across the United States, sometimes in blazing heat, for their political convictions. The duo is a reminder of the freedoms we have, and that you also don't have to walk across the country to make a political stance. Rather, a good start would be more people voting in elections.
The editorial board isn't saying it agrees or disagrees with any of these youth's stances. However, that they are taking stances and completing actions says a lot about these youths.
But more so than anything, the editorial board believes these kids are breaking perceptions.
They are hard working, dedicated and talented.
And we're proud of them.