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Friday, February 23, 2018

How The Parkland Shooting Affected Me !!!

It’s Valentine’s Day, and I’m sitting in my sixth period elective. My teacher’s phone starts to buzz. He pulls it out and reads, “School shooting in Parkland, Florida.” He lets out a little shrug and says something under his breath before slipping his phone back into his pocket and continuing on with our discussion. Everyone in the class ignores the two heavy words he just said and continues on with our in depth discussion of The Kite Runner.

In retrospect, we’re all sort of disgusting.

We’ve become desensitized to the word “shooting.” It means almost nothing to us, but for the first time in my life, I saw what it truly entitles. As I discussed the events with my peers, I wondered, “What would they say about me if I died in a school shooting?” It’s not something I should have to think about, but it’s something that may happen to me nonetheless.

School shootings, at least at my school, are regarded as somewhat of a joke. One of my teachers often goes as far to target specific students he believes could become school shooters. We don’t think about these things the way we’re supposed to. I live in the most Republican part of California, where almost everyone loves the NRA, Trump, and trucks. Instead of demanding reform, the people around me simply mutter things like “If the kids bullied him, they got what was coming,” “Guns don’t kill people; people kill people,” or “If you take away guns, it doesn’t stop someone from getting one.” Most people in my area regard it has something that happens in life while others reject that philosophy wholeheartedly. It didn’t happen to us, so why should we care?

The laissez-faire attitude in place at my school disgusts me. I am genuinely afraid of what could happen to our school, and I have no doubt that there are students who would genuinely consider harming our institution. I know that I shouldn’t have to think about what would happen in shooting. But how would I act? Would I die? What would I want them to say about me if I died? What if my friends died? What would I do after?

The internet is an amazing place. In middle school, my friend’s boyfriend began talking to a girl he met online. Little did we know that a few years later, she would be witness her teacher die in the Parkland shooting. It may not have happened to us personally, but it happened to people we know. And it could easily happen to us.


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