via Aviano Air Base

“Back to School Essentials”

The viral video shared by the Sandy Hook Project

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Sandy Hook Promise was founded to prevent future school shootings.

This past week a video, which has since gone viral, was shared by The Sandy Hook Project. The one-minute clip exemplifies the realities of school shootings and the necessities of more proactive gun-related policies.

For those unfamiliar with the video, it begins like any other back-to-school ad, with children showing off their new merchandise. The video quickly escalates from backpacks and folders to scissors being used to defend oneself and a sock being used for a tourniquet. Reality hits hard in the video, which reminds us that children will inevitably have to fight for their lives within schools this year.

Watching the video, it’s hard to imagine yourself in such a situation. As the videos cheery attitudes quickly turn from cheesy to disturbing, it is not a clip that easily leaves the viewer’s mind. The video itself begs the question: How have school shootings been allowed to happen and why in the world are they still occurring?

Most college-aged individuals seem generally supportive of gun reform. Most responsible gun owners shouldn’t mind more regulations. If a person goes through all the proper channels to attain a weapon, they seem to approve of others doing so as well. On top of that, most people who use guns regularly do so in a capacity where automated weapons are never necessary. 

Critics of the video, and of gun-reform policies in general, are quick to add comments about how arming teachers would prevent the situation or the very clever “guns don’t kill people, people kill people.” The idea that adding more deadly weapons into a school environment would serve as a deterrent and as a precaution for safety baffles me. Most school shooters do not fear death. With suicide as the intended outcome, armed teachers do little to deter. On top of that, teachers are not officers and should not be held to such standards. 

As for the “guns don’t kill people” comment, I suppose in a warped and very literal sense, guns don’t kill people. However, if an individual entered a school with a hammer instead of a weapon which could fire off twenty to thirty rounds in a matter of seconds, the damage would be considerably different.

Gun control is not an easy issue to approach. People are ready to ban vapes, a device that has killed 6 people when they have not been able to create a few responsible barriers to a weapon that kills roughly 40,000 U.S. citizens each year.

If none of this hits home and gun reform still sounds ridiculous, watch the video. Put yourself in the shoes of a ten-year-old trying to stay alive from a gunman. It’s terrifying and disturbing and has been the reality for some 228,000 students who have experienced a shooting. However, if everyone refuses to accept this state of existence, it may not have to be the reality for anyone else.

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