MATTER OF CONCERN
In response to the Florida school shootings, President Trump assured guardians of stringent mechanisms by arming teachers with guns to protect students. Can we go far without addressing the root of the problem?
Kabir | The New Leam
The occurrence of school shootings is not rare in US anymore. The greatly acknowledged understanding about school shootings is that they are attacks on an educational institution, such as a school or university, involving the use of firearms.
A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.
– U.S. Constitution
Incidents of school shootings where four or more people are killed are classified as mass shootings. There can be several causes for school shootings like a dysfunctional family, mental illness and lack of parental control. The United States is reported to have the highest number of school shootings in the world. The Washington Post published an article in which it named school shootings a ‘Uniquely American crises
A total of 65 shootings were reported on schools in 2017. A total of 40 shootings have occurred until May 2018 according to Gun Safety in America.
It is well known that one of the major causes for mass shootings in the US is that there is free access to people to bear arms . The Second Amendment of the US Constitution states: “A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a Free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.”
It has to be remembered that the US has less than 5% of the world’s population and between 35 -50% of the world’s civilian-possessed guns.
It was in the wake of the Parkland and Santa Fe shootings that the push to enable more teachers with arms has gained momentum. The President ordered that school staff and teachers be armed to protect students.
On the political left, lawmakers and activists in the US assert the need for strict gun-control laws and the Republican response has been for more guns. President rump asserts that by arming teachers with guns the response of the attackers can be channelized. If the attacker is aware that the school staff can counter attack, it would reduce possibilities of mass shootings. In a meeting held at the White House where President met several members of the school community, a mother who lost her son in the Florida shootings pleaded the President to rethink his decision to arm teachers and rather train them to educate children in a manner so that cases of school shootings don’t occur again.
The education system has made the world excessively competitive and there are not many arenas that enable the child to bring out her questions, fears, apprehensions and dilemmas. It is a well-known fact that several of the children who were involved in the shootings engaged in the activity because of sheer meaninglessness or envy. There is certainly something terribly unjust about the manner in which children are socialised. The media, the video games that children engage in, the competitive ambiance in the culture of neo-liberalism and the absence of quality learning that cultivates concern, care, cooperation and tolerance has collectively led to this crisis.
Equipping teachers with arms is no solution to the deeply engrained ethical poisoning of the society. It is only by the building of a deeply sensitive, emancipatory and ethically enriched education that a crisis like school shootings can be avoided and an ambiance of trust and ethical consciousness can be inculcated among learners. It will be a hard choice but will enable the society to address the root of the problem. Can we go far without addressing the root of the problem?