I remember the very first time I was volunteering in Big Man’s kindergarten class and they had a lockdown drill. I held it together because, hello, surrounded by 5 year olds, and I didn’t want to make a bad impression upon his teachers, but I got home and fell apart. My little boy was practicing what to do if someone came on campus and started shooting. For all that’s holy, 5 year olds shouldn’t have to know that stuff. But it was part of the routine….they did fire drills, earthquake drills, and lockdown drills. It was, and is, just normal routine for them. That broke my heart then, and it breaks my heart now.
I remember duck-and-cover drills when I was in elementary school. Growing up near the California coast in the midst of the Cold War, and with Vietnam still fresh in everyone’s minds, we were prepared for air raids, along with the usual fire and earthquake drills. I’m sure my parents were a bit freaked their little children were having to learn that stuff. I’ve never asked them. It was just part of life.
We got a call from the district last night….our high schoolers will begin new drills and training – training to run, hide, or fight. I teared up as I listened to that call. My God, what have we allowed happen in our country that our kids have to know how to handle a shooter with a semi-automatic weapon? WTF??!!! That, combined with the massacre in Texas yesterday, plus the Vegas shooting, plus Orlando, plus Aurora, plus Sandy Hook, plus VT…..what does it take? When is it enough to finally enact sensible gun reform? It’s time for more than thoughts and prayers for the families of those slain (not that I’m disdaining anyone’s thoughts or prayers – Lord knows those families need them).
We’re supposed to make the world a better place for our children, give them better lives than we’ve had, right? I don’t feel like that’s happening. As I child I learned what to do if a foreign invader attacked. Our children have had to learn what to do when a fellow citizen decides to take innocent lives. Sorry, but that’s just f’d up.
I get the Second Amendment. Everyone’s guns don’t need to be taken away. But let’s just use a little bit of logic. On the no-fly list? No guns for you. Mental illness (and please remember, I have a child on the spectrum which equates to mental disability)? No guns for you. Been convicted of a felony? No guns for you. Basic, common sense, yes? And why the heck does any private citizen need an attachment for a gun that essentially makes it an automatic weapon, for all intents and purposes? Can we at least admit that much?
Kids should be allowed to remain innocent for as long as possible, and not have to think about a bad guy showing up at their school, their mall, their movie theater, their ballpark, their church to do serious harm. My goodness – we limit what they watch and listen to when they’re children, but yet allow them to be exposed to this possibility?
I’m sure I’m asking for it by writing all of this. But I am so freakin tired of sending thoughts and prayers to the families and friends of those lost to the insanity of a mass-shooting, knowing that even their loss won’t change a damn thing as far as guns are concerned. It’s time for more.