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This morning, Time magazine released its latest cover, featuring the Stoneman Douglas High School students of Parkland, Florida, spearheading the #NeverAgain movement. The story centers around Emma González, Cameron Kasky, Alex Wind, David Hogg, and Jaclyn Corin — although Corin is the only one who isn’t wearing shoes.
At first glance, it seems like the choice could be a visual statement. Empty shoes have had a long history of symbolizing death, and last Tuesday, 7,000 pairs of shoes were laid on the lawn of the US Capitol to commemorate children killed by gun violence since Sandy Hook.
But according to the story’s author, Charlotte Alter, the decision wasn’t premeditated. “We just had them wear whatever they wanted,” she tweeted. “She didn’t wear shoes and we didn’t ask her to!”
Lol bc they’re kids and we just had them wear whatever they wanted. She didn’t wear shoes and we didn’t ask her to!— Charlotte Alter (@CharlotteAlter) March 22, 2018
Jaclyn herself later replied to a tweet praising her “cute little bare feet” with a simple, “Why thank you.”
Why thank you— Jaclyn Corin (@JaclynCorin) March 22, 2018
If anything, it’s a reminder that even though they’re some of our country’s most prominent activists, they’re still regular teens.
Update, March 22, 4:06 pm: Corin has tweeted a particularly fun explanation for the choice, writing, “To everyone wondering why I’m not wearing shoes in the cover: I didn’t feel like it - plain and simple. Hippies didn’t wear shoes in the 60’s so I’m just jumping on the bandwagon.”