It seems like each day, I see or hear something that worries me for the future. Today, while watching the news, a segment focused on teachers who are learning to use firearms. In the wake of the Connecticut school shooting, apparently educators see a need to brings firearms into schools and classrooms. This seems entirely counterproductive, in my opinion.
Why must fire always be fought with fire? The initiative to arm teachers is defended by calling this the best way to protect students. I believe the best way to protect students is to keep them as far away from firearms as possible. Personally, I believe that bringing a gun into a classroom would not make children feel safe. I think it would desensitize children to guns, and furthermore, teach children that violence is the best means of action against more violence.
Before educating teachers on how to fire a weapon, teachers should be educated on how to recognize signs of psychological disorders. In school, I never even knew the name of my counselor. What good does it do to have a counselor in a school, if this person is not active in the school at all? I believe all students should spend one-on-one time with their counselor, and that this counselor be better trained on psychological issues.
Not only that, I believe all teachers should have some psychological education under their belt, so they can recognize warning signs that something is not quite right with one of their students. Instead of sending a problem child to time-out or the principal, maybe they should be sent to the counselor first. So many students are sitting in classrooms today with issues just under the surface that no one takes the times to uncover or address.
The shootings in schools, and movie theaters that have happened recently are at the hands of young individuals. Perhaps this senseless violence could have been avoided if someone had sense enough, while these individuals were in school, to look closely at their mental health. So many mental disorders go undetected today, which is surprising, considering how many people actually do struggle with their mental health.
We live in a very fast paced society; a society that is very self-centered. Perhaps, instead of jumping the proverbial gun and setting our sights on arming teachers, we should pause, and instead place our sights on the students. Focus on the real issue here, because it's not guns. The real issue is mental health, and the blind eye that is turned to it.
I hope that one day, no one will ever have to live in fear of sending their child to school. Or live in fear of venturing into public, because anyone could be armed and ready to pull the trigger at the drop of a hat. I'm not a fan of guns to begin with, but I believe the government shouldn't focus so much on reforming gun laws, they should invest in psychological education.
That's one thing that really annoys me about America and the age that it's in; everyone wants to fix problems as quickly and painlessly as possible, instead of investing some time and effort. So many of the issues in this country could be fixed if people and politicians weren't so greedy with their money and time. Instead of being so self-centered, we should be society-centered, and look out for each other. I sadly don't see this happening any time in the foreseeable future; but maybe if more people started highlighting the real issues, eventually others will catch on and change will slowly become more visible.
Lindsey. Twenty-Five. Currently pursuing a degree in Professional Writing & Film Studies.