Gun control- the topic of every session of congress, presidential debate and now Lowndes High Administration. As the school system has made students and parents aware, February was School Safety Month, which means that fire drills, tornado drills, and even an intruder drill were practiced in preparation for the worst case scenario- Columbine, Sandy Hook and Virginia Tech.
“The security of Lowndes High has multiple layers […] the intruder drill is for, at minimum, the staff to know what to do if there was to be a threat to students,” said Deputy Croft, Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office Deputy and School Resource Officer
Lowndes High School, along with the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office, has taken extra precautions to protect students and faculty against a gunman or an unarmed intruder, including multiple, full-time School Resource Officers, located throughout the campus. Lowndes High is also monitored by hundreds of security cameras, school security personnel, deputy sheriffs and administrators, but the question is still raised: Even with multiple security layers and armed deputies on campus, why is there the need for an intruder drill?
The answer is simple. America has a gun problem.
From frequent school shootings, to other random acts of terrorism, innocent Americans are the targets of brutal onslaughts. The grim reality is that students and faculty now have to prepare themselves for the unlikely event of an active shooter on campus, but it is essential to keep in mind that these students are only minors, not soldiers, fighting a war. But with shooters often having the upper hand, it is like soldiers against students, a war in our schools.
According to the Brady Campaign, there is an average of 108,000 persons are shot a year in either a murder, assault, suicide, suicide attempt, accidental shooting or by police intervention. Out of the 108,000 shot on average, each year 32,514 those Americans die a year from gun violence, while another 75,962 are injured. A national average also states that about 40 percent of these weapons purchased were bought with “no questions asked” or without a proper Brady Background Check, as required by federal law, under 18 U.S.C. § 922 (s)(1)-(3)(D).
The primary way to discourage and lessen the gun related violent crimes and deaths is for state and federal legislators to pass laws requiring that Brady Background Checks be performed on all and any persons attempting to purchase a handgun or semiautomatic weapon. Persons listed on the Terror Watch List should also be banned from buying any type of firearm. Tougher punishments for violent and gun related crimes should also be implemented at the state and federal level. With more severe punishments and stricter gun laws, the likelihood of a mass shooting or serious incident at Lowndes High would decrease drastically.