School shootings are horrible and tragic. There have been so many in the past few years. The first one I recall hearing about as a youth was the one in Columbine, Colorado. It shocked and grieved the nation, and has not been forgotten. It should not be forgotten. Almost 19 years later today, when I googled the word Columbine in making this post, the first three suggestions that I was given to go with that word were shooter, death toll, and victim.
There have been many measures taken and arguments made since that tragic day to endeavor to oppose, stop, inhibit, and prevent school shootings. Some have been more effective than others. Some have been righteous and reasonable and just. Others have not.
But still shootings have continued to happen. One source claims that there have been some 50 mass murders or attempted mass murders at a schools since Columbine.1
As I pondered this last horrific act in Florida, I was struck with a new innovative way to deal with those committing the crisis. Maybe, just maybe, this would affect the frequency that seems to be escalating with school shootings.
I mean, we know now that these attacks at schools are going to happen. Even though it is illegal, there will always be someone who will want to do it anyway—the danger, the fame, and the thought of defying the law seems to make it that much more appealing to a segment of our culture. So, maybe our society should try another ploy. Maybe we should legalize school shootings.
1. The shooter is a victim too. Many only commit this crime because they are confused, feel pressured by the voices in their head, feel rejected by their peers, or are desperate for attention. We don't know what some of these individuals have experienced or the circumstances that would bring them to such a decision, so we really shouldn't judge them. Some have mental issues and nearly all of them have been taught (by their own educational institutions) that there is no real basis for right and wrong—we are all merely evolved animals, simply bi-pedal protoplasm, and there is no purpose in life nor any Judge to face after this life is over. Our society has thus made the case that there is no absolute truth and therefore can not consistently condemn any act as wrong. We have taught our children to do what they feel like doing anyway, therefore, these "deranged" individuals are victims as well, and really shouldn't be prosecuted.
If school shootings become legal*, these shooters can act consistently with what they have been taught, and not be shamed or feel guilty about their actions. They won't have to hide what they are planning to do, and it will give others more chances to talk with them and maybe change their mind without slurring the ethics of their actions. After all, it is a choice they have and we shouldn't keep people from their right to choose.
2. Illegal shootings are dangerous.
Shooters today are doing this at great risk to themselves. Think about what they have to worry about:
—conceal/carry people possibly being nearby.
—the likelihood that someone may call the police.
—the odds that they may be hurt themselves.
The very real fact in school shootings, as in other public square shootings, is that, more often than not, the school shooter ends up dead himself. School shootings need to be made more safe...for the shooter.
If school shootings become legal, these shooters will be so much more likely to survive. They won't have to worry about the police or conceal and carry individuals. And after all safety is our goal, right? I mean, once school shootings become protected, society will not want to go back to when shooters had to take such risks. And think of the money that will be saved when government schools won't have to pay for security systems, guards, etc.
3. The notoriety factor is a thing.
Some people want the fame of being a rebel against authority—of being the subject of news reports, twitter feeds, and conversations—even if they die before getting a chance to read the blazing reports. They feel they left a mark on society. That they got even. They want to have the same flash as other shooters before them, thus the "copycat syndrome" takes effect.
If school shootings become legal, well, there goes the acclaim, the excitement of rebelling, the feeling of exhilaration over taking on the government. It will become a mundane, boring thing to murder the innocent sitting in the lunchroom. It will lose its appeal for many. It will become less common.
4. The power of regulation.
When a thing becomes permitted by the government, it comes somewhat under control of said government. The state has a say in how an act can be committed. And our government has shown a great talent in making rules and restrictions. This will only curb and lessen the amounts of school shootings, and minimize the devastation even further.
If school shootings become legal, it will provide an avenue to regulate and control school shooting in so many ways. I think it very likely that a pro-school safety movement will arise, providing much legislation and work to create a culture of change. They will most likely get support from concerned citizens, including the religious population, to oppose school shootings in this way.
Here are a few of the regulations that could be made that feasibly could be passed without violating the shooter's right to choose (the possibilities are endless):
—A person must apply for a school shooting license and attain certain level of training in order to perform a shooting. If there has to be school shootings, let us ensure that they are done by a licensed professional.
—Enact a school shooting tax, and put it towards government education. If they have to pay to commit the shooting, it will decrease how many will pursue that path.
—Establish a 24 hour waiting period after they have determined to carry out the act. If they have to think about it for a day, some will choose not to do it. How could anyone be against such a bill? It will prevent impulsive shootings. It will give precedent, and maybe in a decade or so, the waiting period would be pushed to a 72 hour wait.
—Require minor shooters to have written parental permission. This should be a no-brainer.
—Create education bills that will be effective to let the shooter know that those they plan to kill are human as well—that they are breathing, heart beating individuals. They will be informed at what ages students are likely to have learned to tie their shoes, to be able to whistle or read, diagram a sentence, or solve a trigonometry problem. This will demonstrate how like themselves they are. This will hopefully establish their compassion toward those they want to get rid of, and may help a shooter to reconsider and turn them away from such a hideous act. After such education, these troubled shooters may even become pro-school safety themselves.
—Establish a bill to ban the shooting of those who will be graduating this year from college or university since they are almost out of school as fully developed members of the government trained society. Then maybe a bill that protects all college students, since we can prove that they are not as dependent as those in high school (well maybe not, but this may encourage more to be independent and self supporting). A win-win in anyone's book. At least those who have graduated are, on the average, more viable members of society than grade-schoolers. And as college students can go to the polls, this will likely have abundant voter support. Some may say that this is not fair to younger students, but hey, if it saves one life it must be good. We will assure any nay-sayers that at a later date those who are younger (and just as valuable, of course) will also be protected by law. Victim age restriction will secure saved lives.
—Procedure rules are a must. Here are a few ideas:
a. A bill that bans the use of bombs since that weapon of choice is much more messy, could endanger the shooter himself, or could kill even neighbors and bystanders in the public square. Bombs will also cause more damage to structures, costing the state more money. Voters will see the virtue in not further affecting their wallets.
b. A bill requiring (or at least be highly recommending) shooters to wear protective body armor. Some students will seek to defend themselves and safety to the shooter should be chief in our concern, for we are compassionate. Of course, as it becomes illegal to shoot in colleges, and then in the high school (maybe 15 years into this kind of legislation), the instance of fighting back will become less common. Come to think of it, the fact that a college student may fight back with more gusto than those who are younger would provide more evidence of their viability, strengthening the case to ban all college shootings.
c. Anesthetization requirements could be a powerful measure. Making it a rule that the students be chloroformed, or numbed in someway before being shot, will further establish the fact that school shootings are painful, and might even turn a shooter away from doing it. If there is going to be a school shooting (and we have established that this is a fact), isn't it better to at least cut down on the pain the students have to undergo while we try to stop it all together?
Finally, someday, there may be a time when school shootings become only a very occasional occurrence, because of the hassle of the red tape required.
The slogan for these measure could be something like:
"School shooting—Safe, Legal, and Rare."
[Note: This post is not to be construed as an actual justified plan, nor is it meant to be disrespectful or unfeeling towards those affected by school shootings. It is only simply applying some of the widely accepted thinking and tactics used by prochoicers and prolifers in the area of abortion—another mass homicide being enacted daily on innocent victims. If we would be horrified at such reasoning and strategy against school shootings, should we not be just as appalled at the use of such reasoning for the murder of the preborn—an even greater epidemic—a more systemic slaughter of fellow human beings? We need to repent of ageism, the failure to love our neighbors as we love ourselves, and the neglect of justice and equity in our opposition of evil.]
Inequity is Iniquity. Let us not be hypocrites.
Consider the words of God to those who fail to justly oppose evil (Psalm 82:2-5)...
"How long will ye judge unjustly, and accept the persons of the wicked? Selah."
"Defend the poor and fatherless: do justice to the afflicted and needy."
"Deliver the poor and needy: rid them out of the hand of the wicked."
"They know not, neither will they understand; they walk on in darkness: all the foundations of the earth are out of course."
*the use of the word "legal" in this post is meant to mean government sanctioned. I do NOT consider school shootings to be lawful, whatever our society deems permissible. Concerning this post, I echo the words of Paul, who said "I speak as a fool" to show the error of this folly.
I am taking the route laid out by God, in Proverbs 26:4-5, the don't answer/answer method.
:4 "Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him."
:5 "Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit."
I do not accept the compromised thinking of those who oppose the evil in an unjust manner, but I do use the compromised thinking to illustrate the error of that thinking in order to help those who have accepted the compromised position without carefully weighing out the question according to the truth and justice of the God of the Bible.
It should be manifest that...
Abortion is murder of the preborn in the same way that shooting students is murder of the born.
It is not just to regulate murdering humans.
Abortion must be abolished.
1 ABCNews http://abcnews.go.com/US/school-shootings-columbine-numbers/story?id=36833245