Tag Archives: Guns

19 Years Later…had #enough yet?

19 years ago, I was sitting in a high school social studies class. My teacher told us about the Columbine school shooting. Little did I realize the magnitude of the problem of school and gun violence or how it would just be the beginning of so many more to come.

Our society has become so accustomed to tragedies, we move on, we forget.
B.J. Mendelson writes, “It’s like this all across America. Unless it’s tied to where people live and work, barring a threat to their safety or well-being, they don’t care. Not even if it’s 10 minutes away” Unless we are in the thick of it, we move on, we forget.

Today, there were protests, walk outs, vigils to remember the 13 slaughtered that terrible April day. 19 years later. We haven’t changed a thing. There are more gun incidents in school than ever before. 13 so far in 2018 alone. We need to stand up. We need to put our voices and selves out in the world. We need to fight this problem head on. We need to say #neveragain. I’ve had #enough. Have you? columbine pic

*photo credit thecleo.com

19 Years.

weapon-violence-children-child-52984.jpegToday marks 19 years since the Columbine High School shootings. But what was once shocking became a regular occurrence. How could we have ever known where this state of gun violence would end up?

In this final post in my three part series, I want to share my story with my peers, the rest of the Xenials/Millenials. A story of shock, inaction, repeated shock, inaction, indifference, and hope.

Columbine. Virginia Tech. Sandy Hook.

I was a senior in high school when Eric Harris and Dylan Kliebold went on a 51 minute shooting spree in their high school that ended up with 13 dead and 21 injured. The school year was almost over and I was looking forward to graduation in June. Life was pretty great in our sheltered pre-9/11 world where my biggest concern was what dress to wear to prom.

And in less than an hour, that innocence was taken away. I’d lived through the Oklahoma City bombing and Operation Desert Storm, but this was different. This could have been me.

As most tragedies go, the focus sadly shifts from the victims to the shooters in a very short amount of time. Why did they do it? Was it video games? Goth culture? Were they outcasts taking revenge? Even I pushed aside what happened as the news shifted to the shooters and then, when the 20/20 specials ran out of new content, moved on.

Several years later, with Virginia Tech, the same thing happened to me. Shock, anger, obsession, apathy. Then Sandy Hook, then countless others, and I stopped even being shocked.

My generation failed, big time. We could have been the ones who said enough with the thoughts and prayers. Do something. Stop this now. But we forgot. Moved on.

And then an old friend of mine got shot last year in Las Vegas. When he healed, I still did nothing.

Today kids walked out of class in solidarity to ask for gun reform. This culture of gun violence that gets normalized by the older generations with the thoughts and prayers has stopped with them. Why now? What makes them take action where their parents didn’t?

I truly believe that in addition to seeing their peers murdered on a regular basis, that social media has played an enormous role in their movement. Scott says “Your smartphone is all you need” and mentions the importance of Facebook Live (pp. 305-306). Though his writing is more in regards to marketing and PR, it still holds true for social movements. This generation grew up on social media, and they don’t hesitate to use it. Videos that are happening now, that are current, that are anything but what their parents would do to promote a cause. These kids can’t help but see what’s happening live all over the country, and the messages that spread so rapidly can create an urgency to act now.

Today, remembering Columbine, I still can’t help but feel a sense of guilt about my generation’s inaction. And yet I feel pride and hope and inspiration in these kids who have done what we failed to do. It’s not too late to join the fight.

Blog 5

I think that a recent and public issue that I am passionate about is a mixture of proper parenting, and “gun control”. This correlates with the recent unfortunate event in February about the Parkland Shooting that occurred in Florida. I think that the misconception of the whole incident is not gun control but proper upbringing, and a stable morality in the household. A lot of what we do around kids can highly effect them and reflect who they could grow up to be. In the article, “‘He Was Being a Little Bully’: Video Shows Father Punishing his 10-Year-Old with Run in the Rain,” by The Washington Post, they highlight how the Virginia father, Bryan Thornhill, disciplined his son by having him run to school. Long story short, the son was being a bully on the bus, therefore he was unable to ride the bus for three days. Taking actions for his son’s behavior, the father made it his goal to teach his son the consequences of being a bully by running to school, even if it meant running in the rain (it was sprinkling.) The father also mentioned in his video that they only lived a mile away from the school, hence the punishment was reasonable and no harm to his son. He also mentions how it is his priority to teach his son now instead of letting his son grow up to think it’s okay to hurt others. In addition to that, he mentions how parents should be more involved in their child’s life cause it will reflect their growth and who they become. In result, the father says it has improved his son’s behavior at school and at home. Thornhill also emphasizes that parenting should be the importance on any child’s upbringing, not gun controlling. If you can control and properly raise your child to have ethical morals, there would be no need for gun control. He also quoted, “I can control guns easily forever. This, I’ve got to make sure I control now,” in his video. In the case of the shooter in Florida, his attorney was quick to blame it on a mental disorder. Claiming that Nikolas Cruz was a “troubled child,” as if it was an excuse to his behavior. Thornhill mentions in the interview that his son has ADHD, despite that, he also states, “I’m not going to let that define him and limit him. He’s going to have to take responsibility for his actions.  We can’t use our handicap as our excuses in life. We have to find a way to move on.”

In March of 2018, The Washington Post also posted an article about the Parkland shooter, literally illustrating the red flags from his early life up to the event of the shooting. Documenting his case of ADHD, his public announcement of plans to shoot up the school via his Instagram, medical negligence, and many more red flags indicating the lack of supervision and guidance he had throughout his life. In this article, they want their audience to see that Cruz has had red flags since the early stages of his life. Yes, there was contributing events, such as his father and mother’s death, that led him to be without proper care but, it truly shows how much a parent role influences their child’s behavior and actions. Therefore, be an actual parent. Don’t just bring them to the world and expect teachers or coaches to make them good people. Good upbringing starts at home, not at school. Being a parent is obviously challenging in varies scenarios, but don’t neglect it just because it’s hard. Being a parent means taking initiative that you’re responsible for actually raising another human being and teaching them right from wrong. Schools are not always responsible for that.



Trump Media


In the news today with the internet there is a huge amount of fake media that surfaces around the internet media world. There is a huge nesscessity to be able to establish credibility with your sources of information.

In this article I found the media source did not have credibility and was giving false information to his audience. The article talked about the recent school shooting that had the United States public opinion talking about gun control. There were many different opinions the surfaced in this conversation. In this article the author stated that Trump had made a statement that he was going to stop all school shootings by banning all schools. This authors statement was false from what president Trump’s actually response statement was to the recent school shooting and gun control conversation. The author made no point to establish credibility and made a very irrational comment that logically makes no sense. I believe he should have did his research on what President Trump’s actually response was to the situation and not just making irrational statment that was false. The article creates attention because of the statement but loses the audiences favor because of the false information.

Armed teachers?

armed teacherI don’t often browse news websites in my free time so when trying to find an article to use for this assignment I looked at a few mainstream media organizations. The article that I ending up choosing is from the website USA Today. I researched online how accurate articles from this site are just out of curiosity and it was reported as being highly factual and used the least amount of biased sources. It did note that there is a slight left leaning editorial bias. This was pretty obvious by the article I chose. Credibility is interesting to think about when reading articles because people tend to have the assumption that news reports online have to be factual when almost more often than not there is a hidden agenda.

The article I ended up choosing is titled “Trump’s awful plan to arm teachers is straight from the NRA playbook.” I am not someone who is really knowledgable on or into politics but I am able to immediately tell that the title alone highlights the agenda of the article written by the columnist James, Alan Fox.

James starts off giving credit to Trump for meeting the grieving survivors of the recent Parkland, Florida shooting.  He then dives straight to his point by the specific choice of language he uses. He talks about Trump’s ‘cozy, political alliance with the National Rifle Association’. This assists in getting his opinion across to readers. He also mentions Trump feeling caught between the students demands for stricter gun laws and his supporters concern for their second amendment rights. Trump’s NRA backed ‘solution’ is to have armed teachers in schools. I think a good counter argument to Trump’s solution would be to mention that there was an armed security officer on site that didn’t even enter the school. He was someone who was trained his whole life with guns and wasn’t able to enter the school and stop the shooter. How could we then expect our teachers to especially on their $40,000 a year salary?

I think the author did a good job of criticizing Trump’s solution from a leftist perspective but he could have offered a perspective from the other side. What would someone who supported Trump’s solution have to say? Because this topic is so controversial and currently trending I have seen what the supporters, who are mostly parents on my Facebook news feed have to say. They said that they would feel safer bringing their kids to school with armed teachers. I am not a parent yet so I don’t know what I would feel comfortable with at this point but I think at least hearing the two perspectives could assist me in forming a more knowledgable opinion. What I do know is that arming teachers is not going to be the only solution dealing with such a complex issue.


Is there a case study for stricter gun control in America?

Due to recent tragic events, Americans are faced once again with the issue of mass-shootings and gun violence. While stricter gun control is often dismissed as unrealistic, there is in fact evidence that such measures can work. After the 1996 massacre of 35 tourists in Tasmania by a man wielding a semi-automatic rifle, Australia instituted sweeping gun control measures including a buy-back of newly banned weapons.

So did the measures work? Below are two graphs from a 2010 study analyzing homicide and suicide rates in Australia.


The data shows a significant decrease in gun-related homicide and suicide rates. Most effected by the laws were suicide rates, which fell fastest in areas where the gun buy-back program took effect earlier. In other words, Australia’s gun control has actually worked.

While this suggests gun control may be effective, it doesn’t make it more likely that the U.S. will adopt any such measures. Support for gun control surged in Australia after the 1996 shooting, but polls in the U.S. show we are still pretty evenly split on the issue. We love our guns, but we should perhaps take heed: Australia hasn’t had a mass shooting since 1996.