Garfield Senior High School

Opinion: Let’s take a look at gun violence

Guns were designed for protection and for military purposes. Weapons such as assault rifles shouldn’t get into the wrong hands. Recently, the words “gun violence” and “children” have been used in the same sentence too often in the media. Gun violence in school has escalated over these past years.

The way I see it, there are two people (or groups of people) who are going to stop gun violence in schools. One, politicians. Indeed, change will not come without the change of laws. Two, school police. School police officers can certainly stop gun violence but not prevent it. Fortunately, overcoming gun violence in schools isn’t impossible and our nation should strive to keep schools safe.

School shootings have occurred in the past but not on a scale of this size. Gradually, more people have died due to gun abuse in America.

According to the New York Times, since 2012, 438 people have been injured by gun violence, 138 of which have died in at least 239 schools. The last thing we need is to sit back and watch more gun violence occur. The lives of both students and school staff are at risk here.

The mass shooting in Parkland, Fla. by a 19-year-old sparked a nationwide conversation about schools and guns. During the shooting, 17 people were killed, 15 others were wounded. It’s even more unbelievable to hear about deputy Scot Peterson who decided to wait outside of the building during the mass murder.

According to Emily Stewart for Vox, “Peterson waited four to six minutes before entering the building with several other officers, despite hearing gunfire.” Peterson went on to resign and will face several investigations.

We would hope things have gotten better in Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, after a tragic month of February. However, the brother of the mass shooter was arrested for being on campus shortly after the shooting. Additionally, two other students who were found with weapons on the school campus in March, according to Local 10 News.

The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School tragedy inspired schools across the country to speak their voice. Great Mills High School participated in anti-gun movements, but only one month after the Parkland shooting, another school murder took place on March 20.

A 17-year-old shooter was armed with his father’s handgun and left his ex-girlfriend in critical state after shooting her and one other person. On this occasion, the school officer, Blaine Gaskill, stepped in and killed the shooter before he could hurt anyone else.

It is important to note the 2nd Amendment prevents the government from banning guns. Sadly, school shootings cannot end if no changes are made. Should the government, then, choose if the to value an amendment from over 200 years ago more than the lives of today’s students. A voice is a voice, and this nation will need a wave of voices from every school, from every community. Together we can be heard. Let’s not forget those who were lost and let’s make a change.

3 Comments

  • Reply Michael L Maynard May 12, 2018 at 11:36 am

    I wonder if Mr. Rodriguez sees the irony in his piece. First, he says that school police officers are one of only two things that can stop shootings. then he reminds us of the police officer who hid outside while children died.

    Outside of that, we aren’t talking about “assault rifles.” Mr. Rodriguez laments assault rifles being in the wrong hands. But they aren’t even in the right hands. Assault rifles made after 19 May, 1986 are banned from civilian ownership. Those made prior are very expensive.

    Ask Mr. Rodriguez about school and even mass shootings when he was young. His experience would be similar to mine. Mass shootings were virtually unheard of. And that at a time when more homes had guns in them and more people owned guns. This suggests that something has fundamentally changed in our society where some view the answer to their problems to be mass murder. it isn’t the guns. The same guns have been available to the public since at least 1963.

    But it’s easier to reach for the low hanging fruit called “gun control” than it is to do the hard work of figuring out what is wrong and finding a real solution.

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  • Reply Michael Anderson May 12, 2018 at 1:31 pm

    The author states: “It is important to note the 2nd Amendment prevents the government from banning guns.” That is not exactly accurate. The 2nd Amendment prohibits government from passing a law to ban guns. But the reason guns may not be banned is because owning and carrying a gun is an American–indeed, a HUMAN–right. The fact that governments pass such laws disparages people’s POWER to own and carry guns; but the RIGHT remains inviolate.

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  • Reply James May 12, 2018 at 8:38 pm

    Why is it that when somebody uses a gun to kill, it is blamed on the Gun, but when someone uses any other type of tool ( vehicle, plane, bomb, knife, etc.), it is blamed on the Person or Persons that committed the Act. When a person is pounding a nail and hits his finger, they don’t blame the hammer, but their self. People commit violent
    acts, but any type of tool (guns, knives, planes, vehicles, etc.} is their choice should not be accused for the act.
    Whenever any tool used for a illegal purpose, it causes harm. Look at the Twin Towers (two planes — tool of transportation}, Oklahoma ( bomb, truck — tool for moving items), Los Vega ( SUV driven into a crowd –tool for hauling people from one point to another}. I agree that these killings by use of guns is terrible, but taking away guns from Law Abiding Citizens isn’t the answer. All these so called Smart Politicians need to find the Causes of these Acts, not reacting to support a few, but by reaching out for answers.

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