How Can we Stop Shootings in our Schools

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Updated: Mar 28, 2022
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The Washington post reported “there have been seven school shootings in 2018, five of which resulted in injuries and or deaths.” (Cox) It is only February. What we are doing isn’t working. We need to find a way to keep kids safe in a place where they should never have to worry for their safety. The number of school shooting incidents rises every year. Everyone can agree something must be done. We need a new plan with results.The obvious solution would be to create tougher legislation on the purchase, sale and possession of firearms.

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Many school shootings are perpetrated with firearms that are obtained by legal means. Making it harder for would-be terrorists to get guns would provide a deterrent to school shootings. Giving the sellers of these weapons some culpability in the crimes committed with their products would make them a more stringent about their clientele. Illegal possession of guns should carry felony convictions and longer sentences. A felony conviction prohibits offenders from ever purchasing firearms, as well as voting or serving on a jury. is an organization that wants tougher background checks to keep criminals and dangerous people from obtaining the guns (Who we are). The current background checks are obviously not having much of an effect.

The most valued part of the process is the five day waiting period while the application is processed. Opponents of gun reform disagree with the wait but if an individual isn’t willing to wait five days for a gun, he is likely a person that should not have one.The L.A. Times posted an article suggesting semi-automatic assault rifles be banned just as fully automatic weapons were banned by the National Firearms Act in 1934. (We banned machine guns) The law banned machine guns which were popular in gang related crime. Perhaps a new law like this would probit the more dangerous guns while still allowing citizens to own decidedly approved guns for home defense. Any person seeking a gun for home defense would probably not require automatic or semi-automatic weapons.These suggestions might work. They haven’t actually been tried in America in any realistic way yet. Opponents of gun reform fear the loss of their second amendment rights and that it would weaken our defenses against an unlikely invasion by other governments or, even more unlikely, by our own. But If these measures would keep guns out of dangerous people’s hands and stop the much more common event of school shootings, we should commit wholeheartedly, especially if they didn’t really infringe upon anyone’s second amendment rights.

Background checks would be more effective if the responses to the short questionnaires one must complete to legally purchase a firearm were investigated more thoroughly. Privacy laws prohibit the search of a person’s medical records, which could indicate mental illness, so the questionnaire relies on the applicant to be truthful. Maybe an exception to the privacy law could be made in regards to the background investigation to get a gun.The banning of certain firearms could also be beneficial as it would lower the numbers of victims in an incident, if only due to the perpetrator stopping to reload and giving the victims time to escape. We could also limit the size of magazines to ensure a minimum amount of bullets. Banning hollow point bullets and limiting the number of bullets a person can purchase in a specific time frame would also be acceptable deterrents.Ideally, it would be better to ultimately ban the possession of all guns by all citizens if it would stop these senseless school shootings, with the exception of police and military, or those trained to protect and serve people. Or we could try a radical approach…arm everyone. Or at least, arm the school personnel and the teachers like they do in Israel.If shooters knew they would met with opposition, instead of unarmed teachers and scared kids, they might rethink their actions.

“When terrorists attacked a school in Maalot in 1974, Israel did not declare every school a gun-free zone. It passed a law mandating armed security in schools, provided weapons training to teachers and today runs frequent active shooter drills. There have been only two school shootings since then, and both have ended with teachers killing the terrorists.” (Israel)It’s hard to believe that more guns could be the answer. It would be nice if there were no need for guns at all, but right now, in this country, that is only wishful thinking. When you want to protect something, you don’t leave it unattended. We value our money and keep it locked up in banks with armed guards. Our children are more valuable to us than money. It would reassure us knowing that our children were guarded while at school. This would not mean a teacher would be mandated to carry a gun, in a shoulder holster, during class, every day, but it would grant them the option of keeping a firearm secured at their desk or workstation.Reforming gun control laws is a good idea but it takes a long time. Once the politicians get a hold of the issue, they use it to bargain for their own agendas, dragging their feet so long we forget what it was we needed them to do. And if we can get them to agree on any proposal, then it goes through the same process in the legislature.

By the time citizens are given the vote, the proposal is so watered down by compromise that it no longer has any teeth. These little changes are like baby steps and help pave the way for a long term solution. So when we get this long awaited solution in the form of a new law, the only problem is that the criminals don’t obey the laws anyway.The first thing we should ensure, before we make new laws, or try to ban guns, is that the children are safe in school by whatever means necessary. Putting firearms in teachers’ and school personnel’s hands is not meant to be the final solution, but it is one we could implement right now to deter school shootings until a more rational, permanent solution is found.If we only see the problem as guns in our schools, to add more guns seems ludicrous. But the gun in itself may not be the root cause of the problem but a mere tool. The root cause likely lies closer to being the evil that exists in some people and the madness in others, and that you can’t usually tell which just by looking, or even investigating. We need to find a way to identify people who are at risk for violence and help them. Would any of our proposed efforts stop school shootings or just change the nature of the violence? If a bad guy wants to go into a school and shoot a bunch of kids and he doesn’t have a gun, he will get one somewhere.

If a gun was not an option, would he then make a bomb? Or use a knife? Or just forget it and go home? We should try to see this act of violence against children from the terrorists’ perspective. What is it they hope to accomplish? What do they want? Do they feel powerless and wish to reclaim the feeling of power by scaring people? Or reclaim a feeling of ultimate power by taking lives? If we knew what drove them, we could find a means to stop them.School shootings started before Columbine in 1999 and the gun control debate just goes on and on, and no changes are taking place, other than the number of school shootings rising every year. We need to protect the children right now. While we try to reform the gun laws, rehabilitate the criminals, and cure the mental patients, we should give the teachers and school personnel the option of guarding themselves and our children.

Works Cited

Cox, John Woodrow, and Steven Rich. “Analysis | No, There Haven’t Been 18 School Shootings in 2018. That Number Is Flat Wrong.” The Washington Post, WP Company, 15 Feb. 2018,

“Who We Are.” Everytown for Gun Safety,”We Banned Machine Guns in the 1930s. Why Can’t We Ban Semi-Automatic Assault Rifles Now?” Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Times,”

Israel Proves the NRA’s Arguments.” Israel National News,

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How Can We Stop Shootings in Our Schools. (2019, Mar 23). Retrieved from