School shootings on the rise?

What's going on? Why are there so many school shootings occurring? Just this week we've had a high school shooting in Thurston County (Washington State) and another scare at another school near that the next day, but a weapon and shooter were not discovered. Yeah, maybe it was a car back-firing or something else, but who knows.

Today, I got a call from my daughters high-school in Lakewood, WA to let me know that they were in lock down because a student was caught with a weapon at school.

The #1 reason that kids bring weapons to school is because they are being bullied. Now, that doesn't mean that they are not billies themselves that feel the need to protect themselves... and that doesn't mean that they are not bringing a weapon to school to aid in their bullying efforts... but bullying is the #1 reason. And don't forget that bullying today doesn't stop at the school. We have this "wonderful" thing called Facebook, where people will and do air all their dirty laundry and share things that they shouldn't, but not only that... they will bully and attack other kids very personally and publicly, for everyone to see. So, unlike when I grew up, the bullying no longer stops once you're out of school and safely at home. Cyber-bullying can go on all day, every day.

Did you know that 77% of students have reported being bullied, and 1 in 5 students reported bullying other kids. Those are some staggering statistics that I found on BullyingStatistics.org.

I've read that violence is on the rise in high schools. Well, I've not seen that to be the case, at least not in my area. I don't hear reports from my kids or the news about teens getting into fights. I also chaperon school events and never see anything there either. No, I don't think that's really what's causing this.

Are our kids desensitized? I think that they are. There are a lot of arguments to change the attitude towards weapons for everyone, but even more so for our young students. Our students do see a lot of violence on TV and in video games, and often the answer to bullying or wrongdoing does include fighting and a weapon of some kind.

Many people believe that weapons shouldn't be so freely and easily obtainable. I personally don't think that's necessarily a great way to correct this problem. I happen to stand behind our second amendment rights. But certainly, keeping these weapons out of a child's hands is a great place to start. Do you, as an adult, own a firearm? Do you take precautions? Do you have it locked up? Is your ammo in a separate location from the weapon? I feel that it's the gun owners responsibility to make sure that their weapon is secure and that it is not obtainable by a young person or their friends. This is part of being a responsible citizen. You certainly don't want it to be "your" weapon that was involved in a child shooting, do you? BTW, hiding your weapon in your sock drawer, the top shelf of the closet, under the bed, or any other place is NOT being responsible, LOCK IT UP.

Do we, as parents, need to consider abandoning the public school systems. Put our kids into online schools where they don't have to face these types of things on a daily bases? I don't want to shelter my child, but at the same time I don't want to get that phone call that a student, at my kids school, was shot either.

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