Can We Eliminate School Shootings? No, But We Can Sure As Hell Try!
Upon hearing about the recent school shooting in Florida as well as the one close to home in Marshall County, Kentucky, I find myself growing numb to understanding why the shooter did what he did. Instead, I try focusing my efforts on praying for the families of the ones that were impacted by the horrific event. In 2018, things are significantly different than when our forefathers penned our rights. When shootings like this occur, I know it’s going to be a backlash of Democrats vs Republicans battling over gun control rights and part of me wonders if they, too, lose sight of the issue and are focused on driving home their agenda for political gain. There are plenty of things we can do differently to help reduce these types of events, but sometimes, no matter how hard we try, bad things happen because bad people find a way.
Given the nature of TheTravelBallDad.com is about providing good content to parents and youth athletes, it’s hard not to think about all the venues we visit for the ten thousand tournaments a year in which we participate and how we rarely see any type of security or law enforcement. Yes, there is the overzealous parent from time to time that has to have the police called so they can be put in time out, but as a whole, an armed guard presence typically isn’t around. What if this were to happen at a tournament? I hate to think about that scenario, but it is a concern. Should tournament directors begin providing armed guards similar to resource officers provided at schools? I don’t know the answer to that question. If we begin placing armed guards at every youth tournament, would that prevent a tragedy from unfolding? Possibly. But, if we feel it necessary to post a guard at every tournament, are we feeding into the frenzy of the people of whom we’re trying to be protected from, therefore giving them power?
This isn’t a political rant I promise. I want our kids to be safe just like the next person. Maybe the answer to reducing these types of occurrences isn’t gun control, but addressing bullying and treating people right? I was fortunate to listen to one of my son’s coaches recently as he shared with them a message of compassion. Long story short, be nice to those who might not be as fortunate. If a kid is sitting by himself, take it upon yourself to sit next to him or her and be a friend. If someone is getting picked on at school, don’t join in, but instead, be a voice for the weak. I feel strongly the reason for some of the school shootings is a result of the massive pressure our young people are put under today as a result of social media, video games, and the evil camera phone. If we as parents reinforce a message of compassion and humility, I wonder if that helps to change the results?
I can’t imagine what the families who have been impacted by any shooting have gone through or are currently going through. I send them my prayers and hope that the memories of the good times with their loved ones help them through this difficult time. If we do our best to be involved with not only our kids, but any kid and convey a message that you are special, you are wanted, I believe that’s a step in the right direction and can be a powerful tool to help reduce tragedies like the one we just witnessed.
Be nice. Have compassion. Show humility.