One of the things that Democrats have highlighted in their big push for gun control has been mass shootings and specifically school mass shootings.
While such shootings are tragic and we should work on addressing them, it’s also important to put in perspective how rare it is, still, to have a school mass shooting, despite some in media and politicians seeming to suggest that they are happening all the time.
When that narrative is pushed, it stokes unreasonable fear, not based upon the actual incidence of such mass shootings.
At the Franklin High School in Ohio, they did something on Tuesday during an active shooter drill that seemed to feed into that fear.
According to the Dayton Daily News:
Today’s drill will consist of Franklin police firing blanks in the building using a shotgun and rifle several times so students and staff can react as they would in a real world scenario between 7:30 and 10:30 a.m.During the controlled drill, students and staff will practice barricading in classrooms and evacuating the building school officials said. Officials said the drill will be handled slowly, step by step, to accurately inform students and staff of best practices to handle active threats.
But if that disturbed you, no worries, they had “social emotional activities” to address that.
The remainder of the day will be devoted to conversations in each of the students’ classrooms related to safety, as well as other Social Emotional Activities to help students process any emotions they feel as a result of the drill. Counselors will also be on hand to assist students.
One can’t knock a school trying to figure out the best way to defend against a school shooting.
But who thought that this was a great idea?
How about preparing kids in a responsible manner but also telling them how rare it is? And how they should not be unreasonably fearful?
If you listen to kids being interviewed in media today, they think that it’s very likely that they could be shot in school. And if they manage to survive that, climate change is going to do them in the next few years. And responsible adults are not disabusing them of this fear.
Then we wonder why kids are suffering more from psychological issues when such things are being stoked as likely existential threats.
But in fact, as a recent ABC News story noted, there have been 21 mass shootings according to FBI standards, meaning 3 or more killed, not including the suspect. Not one of those shootings is a school mass shooting. Some of those are family disputes.
Now there have been “school shootings” as we have commonly come to understand the term, meaning someone coming in with a gun meaning to shoot up the school, although without 3 or more killed. There was the shooting at the Stem School Highlands Ranch in May where one person was killed and eight injured, and the shooting at UNC Charlotte where two students were killed, including hero Riley Howell who bravely tried to stop the gunman. But many of the things covered in lists of “school shootings” are things things like accidental discharges or robberies committed at night that just happen to be on a school playground but otherwise unrelated to the school.
It’s important to protect our kids. But it’s also important to be truthful with them and not allow a political agenda to overtake reality.