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A Matter Of Safety Essay

965 words - 4 pages

Thirteen people were killed at Columbine High School in 1999, thirty-three died during the Virginia Tech shooting in 2007, and twenty-seven people, twenty of whom were children no older than seven, were killed at Sandy Hook Elementary School in 2012 (Kirk). These name only a few of the larger and most well-known school shooting incidences. In total, 297 people have lost their lives due to school-based shootings since 1980 (Kirk). Although this number may be small in comparison to death by guns overall, these instances are completely unwarranted and it is likely that they could have been avoided or at the very least reduced. These people, college and high school students, teachers, and even children, might still be alive today if our society had taken this impending threat more seriously. In order to protect our children, families, and loved ones from the unavoidable dangers of the world we live in it is imperative that we take a fresh and open-minded look at the idea of allowing guns on campuses and other “gun free zones”.
Opponents of guns in schools suggest that allowing guns on campuses will make students feel unsafe. Teachers opposed to guns in classrooms suggest that their students will not be as open to expressing their opinions in classes if they are aware that people around them are carrying guns and could act out violently against them if they disagree in their opinions (Goldberg). To me, this seems like an unfounded excuse to ban guns. Having personally grown up in a family that owned guns, I was taught not only how to shoot them, but also how to safely handle them and to respect them. Handling a gun is not something that most people take lightly, and especially those who have gone through the necessary steps to legally obtain a concealed carry permit, are highly unlikely to act out against someone in a classroom just because of a contrasting opinion on an academic subject, especially to the extent of taking a person’s life. The article “The Case for More Guns (and Gun Control)” states that research shows “permit holders in the U.S. commit crimes at a rate lower than that of the general population,” proof that gun-carrying students would respect the weapons they hold and are not likely to lose their temper and shoot someone for something as simple as a classroom debate (Goldberg). Another solution would be the training and arming of teachers, allowing those willing to protect their students to have a means to do so. This likely could have saved the life of Victoria Soto, a brave but unarmed 27 year old teacher who hid her students and then told the Sandy Hook Elementary School gunman that they were in the gym before she, with no means by which to protect herself, was killed.
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