Everyone has blogged about it and I've felt like an arsehat for NOT talking about it.
Why haven't I?
I have very strong feelings that I am merely...ignoring. I am a teacher, having taught from pre-school through to adult education for, dear God, 12 years now. I have been in well over a dozen schools and interacted with thousands of students. To imagine that some of them could have been the victims (none were but still...) is too much. I don't want to think about some of the faces I've taught, erased.
I don;t want to think of the lack of security in schools. It has improved- as a child a parent (or whoever, good or bad) could just walk into the classroom. I mean, they never did in my small town and had the courtesy to check into the office, but still. Now they HAVE to and gates are locked and the like. My own current school is all high tech meets prison, with every door protected by a card scanner where you scan your id to get in...as long as the door is locked. And as in every school I know, to get in you must enter the office, check in, sign in, bla bla bla.
But what if you are crazy and hell bent and kill the secretary? Or merely scare her into submission? Even if you get past by conceling your motive, once you're in and on your massacre, it takes ten, twenty, howver many minutes for police to arrive. Even if there is an armed police officer next door, the crazy guy can shoot through a magazine or two of bullets. That quickly. And to my knowledge, no one on campus is ever armed but the one in a million Sandy Hook style crazy. Sure, we have lock down- lock the doors, hide, be silent. But what about the child on the way to the bathroom? The late to class student? The teacher on prep going to the staff lounge? Where do they go? What if the crazy guy shoots THROUGH the classroom window? And then can get IN?
Dear God I don't want to think about this but I do since I work in a school.
I now think, what if? When dropping my son off at daycare. And having another child on the way, maybe it is my hormones or just mama bear instinct but I do not like to think about these what ifs. But I'm confronted with it daily, on the news, at home (seeing my child makes me think, what if? Please, God protect us from evil), at work (what if it happened here?
I'm tired of this all, also, becoming just a gun debate. It's mental health, security, society. It's much larger. Take away everyone's guns and only the criminals will have them, since they don't care for laws. Give them to everyone easier than it is to buy a package of
It is a tragedy, People are sick mother f***ers. We either do nothing about the warning signs, or label them and turn it into a stigma- both are damaging.
We need to, no matter who, what, when,where, protect our children.
So...my rambling point, I just gave. We need to protect our children. Whatever that means and whatever it takes.