Wednesday, December 13, 2006

WAY Too Close to Home: Guns in Schools

The Amish shooting was bad enough...an hour and a half away is still way too close, but yesterday the shooting was a little closer to home. A lot closer actually. I learned to drive a stick in the parking lot of this school. I went to this school's Junior and Senior proms when I was in high school. I student taught at this school. I begged the man to move to that area so our kids would be in that school district --but we couldn't afford it...

Yesterday a 16 year old brought an AK-47 and ammunition to school. He attended his first period class and then afterwards in the hallway, he pulled out the gun shot some warning(?) shots into the ceiling, and then shot himself under his chin. The hallways were teaming with kids. (source)

It seems like the 11th grader, Shane Joseph Halligan, was a good kid. He was an Eagle Scout, a volunteer firefighter and had aspirations of joining the National Guard. When his parents saw that his grades had dropped, they told him he may have to scale back after-school activities...that was Monday. I can't imagine what his parents are going through. Obviously the 16 year old must have had deeper problems than having to quit Eagle Scouts (or whatever they told him to give up to bring up the grades), but if this was the last thing you told your kid and then he went and did something this drastic the guilt must be overwhelming...

This same school was on lock-down two months ago when a student was arrested for bringing a weapon to school. They considered metal detectors at that time, but decided it was too stringent. I know the detectors wouldn’t have prevented a suicide, but they would have prevented it from happening in front of so many other kids…When is this country going to start taking school security seriously?!

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