by Summer Maher
When I enter my school in the morning, I expect to be annoyed. I expect to be exhausted and pissed off and ready to go home before homeroom even begins.
When I enter my school in the morning, I do not expect to get shot.
A school shooting on Wednesday at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida marks the eighteenth school shooting in America in 45 days. In 9 of these, high school students were shot and killed.
When I walk into my math class, I don’t expect to see a dead body.
I’ve never paid much attention to the debate about gun laws, at least not until recently. Recently, 17 year olds have been walking into schools with semi-automatic rifles, entering classrooms, and opening fire. Recently, 15 year olds with full knowledge of the school’s layout and lockdown procedures have been strolling into schools with handguns tucked into their waistbands and shooting their fellow 15 year olds while they hide under desks.
There is nowhere to hide in a classroom.
Enough is enough. Every politician in the country tonight will sit on his comfortable couch, grab his phone, and tweet out how surprised and shocked he is. He will send his thoughts and prayers to the families of the victims. He will promise that he will work to make sure this never happens again. Then, he will have dinner with his family, with his kids. He will go to bed. And when the time comes to vote for stricter gun laws and protection for the 15 year olds hiding under their desks, he will vote no. Because he feels safer knowing that while a sophomore can become a murderer, and that while the kids under the desks in math class don’t have guns to protect themselves, he does. In case the shooter comes to his house, to his office, to his family. Then he’ll have the gun.
But guess what? So will the sophomore.
You can pray, send your thoughts, and promise all you want, but until I know that there is no chance that my lab partner will be able to get a rifle and shoot me in the head, I really don’t care.
Because I’m fifteen years old, and I don’t want to die.
HOW TO GET INVOLVED:
Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America are gathering 10 to 11:30 a.m. on Saturday at the Treehouse Cafe, 120 W. Merchant Street in Audubon. Feel free to bring family members, children, and friends.
The time to act is NOW.
You can also visit https://www.sandyhookpromise.org to get involved in ending gun violence in schools today.