As school has been officially underway for a while, it’s now time for parents to try and use anything their kids parrot from school into a deeper political point. Sometimes, it’s just the parent tweeting their child’s opinion as if it’s the Wisdom of Solomon. Other times, a writer may use the kids and their comments in a different, more believable way.
Hell, in this case, I believe the kids said exactly what the writer claims. It sounds perfectly legit. But her deeper point is what’s total bull.
It was the first day of school, the very first day. When I sat down to dinner, I expected to hear my daughters’ happy jabber about their friends and teachers. I did not expect their excited exclamations to center on guns. But here we are.
“Mommy, you know what we’re supposed to do? We’re going to throw staplers at a shooter if one comes! That will confuse him, and his bullets will miss, and more people will get away!”
It was like a record screeching in my brain. What did I just hear? The room fell silent as I struggled to parse the reality that my children had apparently been told to act like Wile E. Coyote, or some other cute but deranged cartoon character who couldn’t die, in the face of a machine gun.
And my kids, being 10, thought that was a really nifty idea.
My kids don’t know what it means to die by gunshot. They don’t know what it means to die at all. They think they’re invincible because they’re babies, and they believe they should stand up and fight a shooter with school supplies because a trusted adult told them to.
Parents are well aware that we live in a time of mass shootings. We worry for our children in a way generations past never had to. Every drop-off, every kiss on the forehead and “Have a good day” becomes precious. We don’t fret day in and day out, but that undercurrent of unease stays with us throughout the day until our little ones are back home with us. We can only hope that, should something happen at school, our babies will be spared.
The column is titled, “We’re teaching kids how to fight off an active shooter. Surely we can do better.”
Frankly, I agree. We can do better, but not in the way the writer thinks.
Our children shouldn’t have to be the ones to fight back, and fighting back shouldn’t be limited to the random objects one can throw at an attacker.
No, fighting back should involve teachers who desire to be armed pulling out pistols and returning fire. It should involve the supposedly responsible adults in the building acting responsibly for a damn change by arming themselves to protect their own lives if nothing else. If they put down an active shooter in defense of their own lives, then the kids’ lives will be spared by extension.
It’s not rocket science.
Time and time again, people like this writer focus too much on the tool used in these brutal attacks and forget that the gun has no will of its own. It’s a tool, an instrument used for good or evil depending on the intentions of the individual holding it. I’d rather see them in good hands than ill, and that means teachers’ hands in this case.
Why is that so hard for some people to grasp?