Everytown For Gun Safety reported yesterday that American schools have suffered, on average, a weekly shooting Every.Single.Week since the Newtown CT tragedy in December 2012.
On at least 74 different occasions, some person, other than a law enforcement officer, brought a gun onto school grounds and shots were fired. In more than half the incidents, someone died. More have been wounded.
This is not just about disenfranchised teens lashing out against unchecked bullying. According to Everytown For Gun Safey’s review of media reports, children as young as 5 years old are bringing guns to school. These shootings are happening in K-12 schools, as well as colleges. (That includes the college down the road for me, where I used to bring my kids to see community theatre shows.)
Image from BodyGaurdBlanket.com
Rather than implement more sensible gun safety laws, instead we’re seeing a whole new marketing line being rolled out to address this serious public safety concern.
The kind folks at ProTecht developed the Bodygaurd blanket to “provide superior protection for children and teachers while at school” That’s right, folks. In addition to learning the Common Core, students can now be trained to line up in an orderly fashion so they can receive their bullet-proof play mat before lying on the floor in a huddled, quivering, solitary mass “protected” from semi-automatic gunfire.
I feel so much better. Don’t you?
We teach our children to wash their hands after using the bathroom. We teach them to look both ways before crossing a stree. We teach them to stop-drop-roll in case of a fire.
Today, I suppose, we must also teach them to tell an adult when a friend confides in them about wanting to hurt other people – or when they overhear plans of retribution or violence being discussed.
Back in the day, we called this tattling. Nowadays, we hail this as heroism.
The reality is, this lesson pushes the onus of responsibility for keeping peace and safety in our schools and communities onto our children. Just something to think about.
Despite what it may seem, this really isn’t a rant against public schools. The reality is, many homeschool families also have children attending public schools – as well as being dually-enrolled in colleges. While the safety odds may be in our favor, homeschooling families are not immune from the potential of tragedy.
With every passing week, with every additional shooting that happens – guns in schools become an even more urgent matter that needs to be addressed, regardless of where our own children are educated.
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