Life is too short to read a bad book.
Wednesday, October 11, 2006,12:36 PM
The State of the World
I need to rant. So with that in mind ~ read at your own risk.

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We had a school shooting yesterday ~ not to the extent of the others that have been nationalized lately, but it's still enough to make me think. An 11-year-old boy went to school with a pellet gun and shot a classmate in the leg. She wasn't hurt, but she reported the boy to the principal right away. He's looking at a "long-term suspension". This reminded me of an incident at my niece's school last year ~ a high school boy went into her school with a homemade wooden gun. Okay, not a real gun but it was enough that he walked into her school with it. Her school was in lockdown all afternoon.

So, I wonder. We send our children to school everyday thinking they'll be safe, they'll be nurtured, and that we'll see them at the end of the day. It's the glass houses we live in. We hear about the awful things on the news, and we feel bad. But it's not going to happen to us. It never does. It happens in those other places ~ you know, where the wackos live. We don't have those here. (BTW ~ When I say we, I'm speaking in generalizations here ~ not specific to my area).

At any of the schools in my area, I can walk right in and head down the hallway. Nobody bothers me. So, how safe are my schools? When my niece goes to school in the morning, what is her environment like? Who's looking out for her? Why is it that with the number of school shootings that have increased over the past 10 years, I can walk right into a school building and have nobody question me? Sure, there's a sign that says "Please check in with the receptionist", but what if I don't?

I don't remember things like this happening when I was growing up. When I was young, I didn't have to worry about my school or my classmates. It was where I spent my days and I was safe. No questions about it. I lived in small town America and the only thing that bothered me is that my neighbors knew my business before I did.

We hear in the news everyday about terrorism threats and what we need to do to ward off the possibility. But then I wonder, that even though terrorism is significant and very real what are the chances that the terrorists get to us before we do? We seem to be killing each other off faster than the terrorists could. Remember the Civil War? It's the only war in history where the enemy was ~ ourselves. Is history repeating itself? With so much violence and more and more civil unrest in the news, are we slowly killing ourselves?

And if so, how do we stop it?

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posted by Dev | Permalink |


11 Comments:


  • At 1:33 PM, Blogger Dylan

    Wow, this was an AWESOME post, because I have often wondered the same thing. With all the wars we're fighting overseas, we have a civil war we need to worry about at HOME. Too many children are shooting other children, adults are shooting children at the place that we send our kids EVERYDAY, it makes me wonder where we'll be in the next ten years. Will this be an everyday thing, or will something be done about it to keep our children safe? But what? Put up more metal detectors at school? How do we stop things like this?

    I, for one, have no idea. There were a few instances when students were killed when I was in high school, but it was off campus and far away from homes, some died by accidents and one died while moving to another state.

    It's a sad thing.

     
  • At 3:03 PM, Blogger Devonna

    Dylan ~ We don't have metal detectors here ~ not yet. And I don't know why. Our schools are broke but mill levys keep getting voted down.

    I didn't even touch on the snipers, the bombings, the road rage, etc., etc. I'd be writing all day.

    This is why I like my romance novels. I get enough "real life" everyday. It's a nice escape.

     
  • At 5:10 PM, Blogger Holly

    We don't have metal detectors here, either. At the kids' last school the gates were locked as soon as the tardy bell rang and the only way on campus was through the office, which wasn't connected to any of the classrooms (one of the most awesome things about living in So. Cal is having outdoor hallways, IMO). So I knew my children were safe there. Even if someone was of a mind to bring a weapon in, they would have had to go through the office.

    Their new school is similar, but I don't know if they actually lock down like the old school did. I know the office/library/cafeteria are in a separate building from the classrooms, but I don't know how easy it is to access the classrooms.

    But I've always said, and thought, that we need to start at home. Yes, I understand, especially after 9/11, that terrorism is a major threat to us. But we're more threatened by our neighbors than we are our forgien enemies. It's sad and I hate it, but that's the way it is.

    We need to focus those billions of dollars we spend on "Homeland" security to...HOME. Right here. There are MILLIONS of homeless people on the streets and MILLIONS of men, women and children being murdered every day, right here. We need a leader who's willing to look close to home for our enemies, and not focus on the ones so far away. Not so intently, at least.

     
  • At 5:12 PM, Blogger Holly

    Hmm, that would have sounded SO much better if I could SPELL!

    LOL

     
  • At 9:35 PM, Blogger Devonna

    Holly ~ I thought it sounded good and I didn't notice anything wrong with the spelling. We don't have gates either at our schools, either. They're just right there, out in the open. It's scary. It just floors me that our security isn't better. Personally, I wouldn't mind taking the extra time when I went to Kiddo's schools ~ put metal detectors in...put the office right at the entry and make me go through it before I enter the school. I don't mind really. Lock all of the other doorways so that they can only be opened from the inside ~ have one main entrance, or if it's a large school have these same security systems in place at every doorway. Quite frankly I think it would be a good investment of our government's money.

     
  • At 11:00 PM, Blogger CindyS

    I'm not a mother but I do know that there are lookdown procedures up here in Canada. Course, that didn't stop my Godson's school from leaving him outside for 10 minutes when he was freakin' four years old. Another teacher heard him crying at the door!

    My only fear about locking up doors is that in an emergency could the children be trapped - I remember we used to have doors with chains on them - what were they thinking!?

    The way the school system works where Holly was sounds like the best way to keep children safe from those trying to get in to hurt them.

    Tonight I was watching the news and found out that two men in their 20s were shot at a mall that Bob and I like to go to every once in a while because the stores are different. I just don't understand why there is so much more violence now then when I was a kid.

    CindyS

     
  • At 12:46 AM, Blogger Rosie

    In my little corner of SoCal the schools are all fenced and gated. With a little effort you could sneak on to the campus, but someone would see you. All the schools are accessed either through a security office (high school) or the office (jr. high and elementary school). All the schools have on site security and the high schools all have an on-site deputy.

    We have zero tolerance for tobacco, weapons, alcohol, and drugs. No metal detectors.

    One of my sisters teaches freshman english...a student pulled out an ice pick that he uses to clean his "pipe" and waved in around in a threatening manner. Sure the kid has been expelled, but kids being kids he found a way to get it and his pipe on campus.

    How do we send out kids to school without making them feel like they are imprisoned?

    I didn't really answer any of your questions, but I think we all share worry and concern for our children at school. No one, any where is safe...we just aren't.

     
  • At 9:04 AM, Blogger Devonna

    Cindy ~ I've heard of chains on doors, but I think it violates fire codes? I think chains are stupid ~ we're not trying to imprison the kids to stay in school ~ we're trying to keep them safe, aren't we?

    Rosie ~ I think my questions are more retorical than anything. It's just getting worse and worse.

    Oddly enough, I went home last night and watched Montel Williams (I love Sylvia Brown Wednesdays). Anyway, they were talking about the state of the world and that there's more and more evil out there.

     
  • At 2:44 PM, Blogger Holly

    We have all of those security measures in place, Devonna, and I feel much better about leaving my kids in school alone. Maybe you should go to the next school board meeting and bring it up. See what they're thoughts are on it.

     
  • At 3:28 PM, Blogger Dylan

    Hey, we have all of those here too Rosie...having the Deputy on site at the schools help, I wonder if they have those in Colorado, the real life officer on campus all the time...I remember ours was my boyfriend's Dad. We never had any weapons issues when I was in school and I haven't heard of any in our schools now...but it sure does make you wonder.

     
  • At 3:54 PM, Blogger Devonna

    Dylan ~ At Kiddo's middle school, there was a cop there during school hours. Didn't make a difference really, though. People can still get in and out of there too easy. Kiddo is in high school this year ~ my siser decided o put her in private school. The school is smaller, but someone could still easily get in and out of there.

    Holly ~ I have a feeling there'll be lots of concerned folks at the next school board meeting. There's a lot of people upset.