Tag: gun control

Taking Our Schools Back One Step at a Time

Are our schools safe anymore?

Not only grade schools, but also colleges and universities are at risk every day for violence. We have to find a solution. The House of Representatives passed a bill on Wednesday to help find and implement new ways to keep children and teachers safe at school. This act is called STOP School Violence Act of 2018 and will authorize $500 million over 10 years for grants to improve training and coordination between schools and local law enforcement. It will also help identify signs of potential violence before they occur.

A modern history of mass school shootings is a website that details some of the most recent shootings that have taken place in our schools. It is a scary fact that we have to worry about the public’s safety in institutions such as schools. Jenna Merrick, an 11th grader at Maquoketa schools says, “I feel safe at school depending on who I see.” She also stated, “Maquoketa Schools have phones to call up to the office and a camera to identify people entering the school.”

Fisher Bisinger, a senior at Midland Community Schools, stated, “I feel safe at school, but I do carry guns with me to protect our livestock and myself.” He also stated, “The school doors are locked at 8:00 am and visitors have to go through the office to enter the school.” He continued, saying, “We have a code that is put out over the intercom and if we hear it we are to leave school and go to the Calkin’s Barn to meet back up.” He wasn’t too sure about this plan, especially if there was more than one assailant.

This was a sample of how some area high schoolers felt about the safety of our schools.

Next, I wanted to hear from a Clarke student and see how she felt about safety on campus. Cassidy Derus stated, “I feel safer at Clarke than I did at the last school that I attended in Chicago, where there was no security.” She also stated “There was a person shot in the alley behind my apartment.” When asked what would help with download.jpgsecurity at Clarke she mentioned security cameras and locks for the interior of the classroom doors.

What is the solution for this violence to end? Gun control? Good luck fighting the NRA on that issue. I think we are heading in the right direction with the STOP School Violence Act of 2018 and it will have to be a multi-faceted approach to be successful. Education and implementation of safety measures will be the key to safer schools for everyone. It’s not all about the guns! We have to take a look at the people that have the guns. Parents, the government, and teachers have to know the signs to look for and alert the proper authorities if they suspect a potential problem.

By: Ron Driscoll

 

Sources:

http://www.indexjournal.com/news/movingbeyond/a-modern-history-of-mass-school-shootings/article_fe37dec8-2f52-5e55-b148-e5574da63f0b.html

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2018/02/14/eighteen-years-of-gun-violence-in-u-s-schools-mapped/?utm_term=.c2b976908d61

http://abcnews.go.com/US/students-country-world-part-national-school-walkout-today/story?id=53712013

Yesterday, I Walked Out.

I’m writing this because I’m mad.

On Tuesday morning at 10am, a group of us in the Clarke community stood outside in the 30 degree weather. I was surrounded by students, professors, staff, BVMs, and even local Dubuquers. I should feel a sense of happiness to see this group standing up. But I’m not. I’m mad.

I’m angry that this has to happen. I’m angry with myself that there are students my age and younger in fresh plots of grave and I am here complaining about the cold. I’m mad at you, the gunman. How could you?

I’m mad at those who won’t listen to us. I’m pissed at the people who won’t take a call to action. I’m angry that the crowd who showed up on campus was so small.

I’m mad because there have been 14 school shootings this year and it’s only March (CNN).

I’m done just “keeping the victims and families in my thoughts and prayers.” We need action. We need change now. This can’t keep happening.

You may be wondering, why did I even attend the Walkout if I’m so upset about needing one in the first place?

That’s exactly why I’m here. I can’t keep letting this get pushed into the nooks and crannies of my brain, feeling sad for a day and then moving on.  Did the victims get to move on?

I’m saddened that there were so few who joined this powerful moment, today. I know it’s cold. I know it’s midterms and we are overwhelmed and busy. I know we don’t have time to give. That’s the point. We don’t have the time, we have things to do, but we pause. We walk out anyway. We take a stand. I want my voice to be heard. I want all of our student voices heard. We are smart, fierce, passionate, and fearless.

I looked around the small crowd and I saw anger, I saw tears, I saw passion, and I saw fear. I hope this leads to something more. I don’t want another shooting to just become a dusted over book, a vague memory of what once was. I don’t want to forget. As one woman in the crowd reminded us, “It wasn’t always like this. It doesn’t have to be like this.” There was silence and then applause and understanding from the crowd.

After the walk out, some of us chose to join in a small group discussion in the Fabiano conference room. We were faced with the questions, “What do you think we should do about gun violence?” and, “How can we prevent gun violence here at Clarke University?”

I had plenty of thoughts, comments, stories, and examples to share. But, I had no answer. We all had great discussions and conversations, shared worries, views, and connected with each other…But, we had no answer. Maybe part of the answer we are looking for is to start talking and listening to each other. We need to take the time to check in with one another; don’t let people get lost in the crowd. We need to listen to others’ stories, concerns, and worries. We all have something to say, so please, listen to us.

 

Source: https://www.cnn.com/2018/03/02/us/school-shootings-2018-list-trnd/index.html

 

By: Megan Kane

Can We Be Honest About Gun Control?

Guns.

I feel like my world often revolves around them. I have never fired one, touched one, I haven’t even been in the same room as one, but they always appear in my world. 

<> on February 14, 2018 in Parkland, Florida.

Photo Credit: CNN 

I remember my roommate turning on the news about the high school shooting in Florida. My mind couldn’t help but think about those terrified kids, and the horror the parents faced, not knowing if their child was dead or alive.  Just a few weeks ago, I was talking with a friend who had someone they care about in a similar situation. After that I had heard stories around Dubuque, the shooter at Senior high school and then the man at the women’s lacrosse game, threatening them with a gun. Guns just never seem to want to leave me alone.

All these stories, they just keep sending me back into images of when I thought my life was truly threatened and how lucky I have been. No one was harmed during the the threats that occurred at my schools but, the fear was real, and you don’t forget it.

To most people, my story would sound uneventful. No one was killed, even harmed for that matter. Heck the band kids were still practicing during lockdown. Even though the boy was in custody, we were unaware that the shooter was not out there, and that alone was enough to send several of us into a state of panic. The second time we experienced this, it was a bomb that may or may not go off. It’s not a gun but its a weapon and that’s enough for me to mention this.

It wasn’t brought to my attention about about how dramatizing these experiences until I told my story to a professor.I reassured them telling them that it was alright, but it really isn’t. No one should live with the fear of someone possibling walking into your class and taking a shot at you.

In response to recent events, I’ve been hearing a lot of chat that included  protests about gun control. In fact my brother was telling me about the silent protest at my high school, but then I heard that a similar protest is going to take place on campus.

Gun control. Not once has anyone asked me on my views of gun control after hearing my story. I can only assume that they believe that I think we need more control over how people get guns, but I never believed that to be true.

Guns were designed to kill, but they are only a tool. They’re like a knife, if miss used they can cause serious damage and harm, but we don’t get mad at knives. It’s how the person uses that tool, thats what causes the damage.

I’m sure a lot of you reading this are disagreeing with what I’m saying. I bet some of you have been in similar situations like me and think the opposite of me, and that’s fine, I understand why but I just need someone to understand where I’m coming from.

When I sat in fear during my lockdown, I wasn’t terrified of the .25 caliber handgun that could possibly shoot me. I was terrified of the boy holding the gun that could possibly shoot me.

*Submitted Anonymously to crux@clarke.edu. Contact Allie or Megan with any comments or concerns.