It’s one school shooting after another these days. Everyone seems to have their own ideas on how to stop them, which shockingly don’t include “getting rid of guns.” Because apparently your right to shoot paper targets on the weekends totally trumps kid’s rights not to get blown away during second period Bio.
One of the more popular and strikingly absurd solutions presented by social media has been “maybe kids should just be nicer to other kids and then nobody will shoot anyone.” Because of course we need to put the onus for stopping mass murder on some 14 year old. A totally logical solution, Brenda.
“Walk Up Not Out” is absolutely revolting. Telling a child it’s their job to stop school shootings by talking to the quiet kid at lunch is not only victim blaming but is spectacularly irresponsible. Imagine if your kid had someone walk up to them and try to talk them out of being a psychopath when they’re really just quiet and introverted.
There’s another problem with the “just be nicer to kids” solution.
Take a look at other countries that don’t have massive school shootings on the regular. Start with somewhere like Australia. No school shootings on a monthly basis out there. Does that mean kids there are super nice to each other all the time?
Kids in Australia are assholes to each other. Even worse than in the US. Not only that but it’s often condoned by parents as a “toughening up” of their kids. Do you see kids in Australia shooting up the place every month?
What about Great Britain? The country that more or less invented bullying completely on its own? Have you ever met British public school kids? They raise being mean into an art form. Those kids are absolutely vile to one another and still have as of yet to see school shootings on a regular basis.
Do you even want to get started on Russian kids?
Point being, you don’t see school shootings in these places where kids are absolute dickholes to one another. It doesn’t make it right for kids to be horrid to one another, but it’s also not a reason the victim kids go picking up assault rifles and unloading. So what then, is the difference between those places and the US? Why do we have asshole kids and school shootings?
Oh. Right. Access to guns.
The thing is that if there’s no access to guns, you can’t shoot anyone with a gun. Other countries have figured this out. Australia had one mass shooting and said “Ok, that’s enough, lads. Hand ’em over.” Problem solved. The UK straight up outlawed guns from the very start. The “what do you seriously need this for” approach has created an environment where police don’t even carry firearms because what’s the point?
Would you have prevented the Columbine shootings if kids were just nicer to the shooters? No, especially since the “bullied kids” narrative turned out to be complete bs. The now-infamous Basement Tapes showed the Columbine shooters weren’t bullied at all and were in fact bullies themselves. They weren’t striking out at tormentors… they were just total psychopaths. Why were they able to shoot up their high school when an Australian psychopath wouldn’t?
Would the ability to walk into KMart and pick up some ammo have anything to do with it?
You’re not going to stop school shootings by telling your kid to single out the loners and turn them into charity cases, making the kids feel even worse about themselves. It’s not their job to be counselors and social police.
What is so hard about this? Everyone else in the civilized world has figured it out.