Blaming Should Not Be an Excuse for Inaction

In a recent NBC Think article by Dr. Whitney DeCamp, politicians including President Donald Trump pointed fingers at violent video games as one of the main causes of violent crimes, such as school shootings. However, while politicians continue to find other sources to blame, students, like those of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, have decided to take matters into their own hands to remind the government that they have a right to feel safe in their schools.

Instead of searching for ways to point fingers, policymakers and President Trump should search for solutions to the growing problem of mass school shootings.

Gun control and laws continue to be a hot, controversial topic that divides the United States policymakers and citizens. Yes, it is important to protect the 2nd Amendment Right to bear arms and people should not have to worry about losing one of the inalienable rights the Founding Fathers wrote in the Bill of Rights. That being said, there is a difference in taking away guns and gun control.

Instead of wasting time better spent working to create new policies, government officials and President Trump should not focus on who or what to blame but ensuring the safety of students.

Simply put, guns need stronger restrictions upon buying a firearm to keep children under the age of 21 from gaining access to them. All firearms, especially automatic weapons, should require a heavy background check that includes a psych evaluation to help weed out not only children but adults over the age of 21. Even after people who have passed the psych evaluation should have occasional or yearly reassessments in case there is a psychotic break.

When it comes to the safety of schools and universities, there should be a stronger sense of security and safety procedures in place. For example, there should be metal detectors at every entrance of the school, security cameras and alarm systems, and at least two trained security guards who can protect the welfare of the students and school staff until emergency responders arrive.

Unfortunately, as Dr. DeCamp points out, these upgrades in security measures and safety procedures are expensive; especially, after the president “…proposed a five percent cut to the Department of Education for this year and state and local investment in schools is significantly down from a decade ago.”

Schools should become more of a priority instead of being placed on the backburner. Isn’t the next generation of leaders important and worthy of not only the federal government but state and local governments to protect?

Students should not live in fear when attending school. They should be worried about tests and assignments or their next athletic event. Wasting time pointing fingers like children is time spent better elsewhere. If the government and policymakers continue to argue over who to blame instead of enacting policies and laws that can better protect the lives of innocent children, then the future generation of leaders like students from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and others will continue to stand up and demand change as is their right.