As this goes to digital print yet another shooting is ongoing. Part two of Making America America will be the next edition.
Dateline: Dalton, Georgia- Teacher barricades himself in classroom and fires his gun.
Gee, guns in classrooms. What a ‘grand’ idea.
What’s wrong? Where do I start? Having spent the usual 13 years in public school, 1 in nursery and 5 in college, what’s wrong: plenty. Skipping nursery, my second teacher lied on her application and didn’t provide all the personal history she was supposed to. When exposed a history of severe mental illness ended her job in a year. Unfortunately not soon enough for my class. Ask the kids: they wouldn’t have doubted that was true. But kids are rarely believed, especially back then. My 4th teacher: 3rd grade, started as advertised by the in school student rumor factory: “She’s tough, but fair.” She left to get married, have her honeymoon, but came back less “tough but fair,” more outright cruel. A few months later she left again for a month, came back wearing a neck brace, towards the end of the school year she was out of the brace and over the top cruel: kicking over desks when displeased, throwing students books all over the classroom then demanding they pick them up. Over the top, harsh, spankings were a regular in classroom item. That summer she killed herself.
As an adult I look back and realize she probably was taking out her marriage problems on us. But I ask a simple question next: should she have had a gun? Should either have had a gun? Would they have kept a gun safely? No student might have found it, played with it, shot themselves or the teacher?
In 6th grade I had Mr. Bob. I pretty much guarantee Mr. Bob: an ex-marine, owned guns and would have kept one safely. But doesn’t a gun in a locked drawer defeat the purpose if your classroom is the first target? Unlocked and students finding it thus still applies. Sometimes kids get places kids want to get far more than any adult can predict.
I had plenty of teachers and professors on my way to an BA, then working on an MA who shouldn’t have had a gun in the classroom. Charlie Rogers always seem delusional and stoned. Maybe he would have been OK, but plenty had issues that would make any sane person question whether a gun would have been wise. Not one who could guarantee the gun would be kept safely so no student would find it and start killing, or kill themselves.
I also know the perpetual answer to shootings in schools: more guns, is having the exact opposite result: more shootings. Yet “more guns” is the answer? Anyone else notice those who suggest solutions and use them to bash others who differ often use the failure of those ideas to make it all worse? It’s like making a ladder to climb politically out of the bodies sacrificed to “more guns.”
I am not for banning guns.
I’m not against all regulations: few are. (Fully automatic?)
I don’t think guns kill people.
But if we are to have guns in society in the quantity we already have them then every citizen, every school, should know basic gun safety; including how to use them… how, when and where not to use them.
These are just some of the discussions we need to have, respectfully. Something we seem unable to do: especially my generation. If gun regulations didn’t work at all then at least some of the shootings would be done with submachine guns. If regulations were the perfect solution then there would be no shootings in heavily regulated states, though one must note that a hell of a lot more of them are happening in states with far fewer regulations: where more guns are viewed as a ‘solution.’ Overall guns are not the solution, nor more than the guns themselves are to blame.
The main problem is our attitudes towards guns, and that includes advocating for absolutely no regulations, no methods of discerning who used guns in commission of a crime like tagents in gun powder, resisting registering the pattern each gun places on a bullet and matching it to store stored images… We need to be sure even those who claim they’d never use a gun still learn gun safety basics. We need more gun trigger lock laws. We should encourage tech that would keep all but the assigned owner from using said weapon. We should be allowed legally to get and offer stats on gun violence; connecting them with certain types of weapons. Legally we have been blocked from having objective results as to gun violence. That needs to stop.
Even highly trained policemen occasional shoot the innocent, so a teacher in a classroom under the chaotic situation of someone murdering student after student should be expected to save the day and not actually kill more? Not unlike the Colorado theater shootings where idiots claimed armed patrons would have solved the situation in a dark theater where what exactly is happening isn’t clear and there’s a lot of unrelated noise, chaos, expecting teachers to do this simply is unrealistic. Would it save some lives? Maybe. Would it cost more lives than it saves? Far more likely.
Keep the guns out of the classroom. Work on attitudes and listen. A lot of people knew this boy was dangerous. Stop cutting mental illness funds. Stop cutting them then claiming we need to focus more on it to detract from gun issue concerns: those who do only make it worse. If this is you, you are like the bully who encourages a kid to run across a busy street, then smirk as you blame just the kid, everyone else. Stop calling children who are expressing their rage “crisis actors” because their ‘politically incorrect’ emotional response to seeing their friends murdered in front of them makes you uncomfortable.
You might as well have been pumping those bullets into the children yourself.
Inspection is a column that has been written by Ken Carman for over 40 years. Inspection is dedicated to looking at odd angles, under all the rocks, and into the unseen cracks and crevasses, that constitute the issues and philosophical constructs of our day: places few think, or even dare, to venture.
Ken Carman and Cartenual Productions
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