There’s been another school shooting. In Sparks, Nevada today, a student at Sparks Middle School opened fire inside the school just before the first bell rang. As a result of the shooting, two male students were wounded, a male teacher was killed, and the shooter himself was killed.
According to CNN, the student was pointing a gun at the teacher. The teacher asked the student to put the gun down, and then the student fired a shot at the teacher, killing the teacher as a result.
As of right now, there is no word yet as to whether the student shooter died via a self-inflicted wound, or if he was shot by a law enforcement officer.
I hate hearing these stories. It tears me apart every single time I hear about another shooting in another school. It hurts me even more today because I am performing in elementary and middle schools every single for my job.
I see those kids faces everyday in schools all over New Jersey. They don’t deserve to die. They don’t deserve to have their minds tainted by one person’s senseless mind. And on top of that … these adult educators who are teaching our children day in and day out … they do not deserve to die either.
It is so hard to make any sense of school shootings because these shootings are orchestrated by people with deranged minds.
Sooooo… what can we do?
Well, look at the basics here. In a majority of school shootings in the United States, the shooter has been bullied, humiliated, or ignored by fellow students or teachers on a consistent basis. These young shooters feel like they are the outcasts of their community, and as a result, they decide that they want to get even with a teacher, their classmates, the entire school, or the community.
Tough Anti-Bullying Statutes
If we want to reduce the amount of school shootings, one of the first things you should do is do everything that you can to reduce the abundance of bullying, and you should do so while students are in elementary school, when bullying is at its peak.
Yes, in a lot of states, there are anti-bullying laws and statutes, but a lot of these laws are just not effective as they need to be. Bullies HAVE to be held responsible for their actions, and schools that fail to intervene at the times that they should, should face very tough sanctions.
Stop the Silence
If you hear something, SAY SOMETHING. I feel like so many people have adopted this culture of silence, and that silence is often promoted… and, in my opinion at least, you should never be silent.
For example – In a lot schools, if a student is overheard making some sort of threatening remark in the hallway, most of the time, that comment is ignored. It is ignored because it is considered “snitching” … and “snitching” is “not cool”.
But what people need to realize that there is a difference between “snitching” and “telling”. In one of the shows I get to perform for schools about cyber-bullying for my job, there is a great line that we use in our post-show discussion with the students:
“Snitching” is when you are trying to get someone INTO trouble … “Telling” is when you are trying to get someone OUT OF trouble.
But, since the school shooting in Connecticut last December (and even since Columbine in 1999), I feel as though there has been a mild improvement in students being more willing to inform a trusted adult about potential school shooter. As a result, some massacres have actually been averted all over the country.
Hey CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC … RELAX!
You know what else would help? If these 24 hour news networks would RE-FRIGGIN-LAX their coverage to a reasonable extent. Yes, journalist not only have the right to pursue a story, but they have a responsibility to pursue a story. And yes, some people receive a little comfort from the extensive media coverage…
Excessive media coverage can get a little ridiculous at times. Non-stop coverage of a tragic event over an extended period of time will only fuel and inspire a potential copycat. At times, I feel as though CNN, Fox News, and MSNBC glorify the fact that it’s a juicy story, as opposed to just reporting the news.
I will never forget during the Connecticut shooting last December, some reporters were interviewing students (without their parents nearby) AS THEY WERE WALKING OUT OF THE SCHOOL! What world do we live in in which a 10 year old will talk to a reporter BEFORE they even talk to their parents after a horrific situation that they may not fully understand?
Assault Weapon Ban
While they Nevada shooting details are stilling coming out, and the weapon most likely wasn’t an assault weapon, but a lot of the previous school shootings DID have an assault rifle as a weapon. The answer is simple: WE NEED TO GET ASSAULT WEAPONS OUT OF THE HANDS OF TROUBLE AMERICANS.
Doing this may cut back on the body counts in shootings all over the country. Stricter background checks need to be set in motion, but some politicians are against this. Listen, if you want to keep your guns, FINE. I know there is no way that we will be able to ban guns, but we need to enact stricter background checks on potential gun buyers.
It will not stop shootings … but it will definitely help the situation.
Anything can help the situation.
This Nevada shooting is a horrific tragedy. It is sad, it is disturbing, and the underlying issues of this tragedy needs to be addressed. In the United States, there are over 10,000 murders that are committed every year that involve a gun of some type.
Because of that, to protect our students and our teachers, we need to protect ALL of our US citizens. Too many people are dying because of gun violence. How much more are we going to take? We need to make our moves NOW.