School shooting in California. I read those words and my heart dropped down, taking up residence somewhere near my toes. I sat in shock and disbelief for a couple seconds, unwilling to accept that after the national tragedy we just endured in Newtown, Connecticut, another school could erupt into gunfire so quickly.
Few details are known about the shooting at the moment, though there is a small spot of hope because no initial deaths have been reported.
Taft Union High School was the location of the most recent shooting. One student and one teacher were said to be shot, though it’s not certain that there weren’t more injuries and there haven’t been any reports on the two victims’ conditions. Local news does say that the person wielding the gun has been taken into police custody.
It is disconcerting to think that the media and the public might brush off this shooting. We’ll consider this a “close call,” and be grateful that no one died. Tomorrow, kids will return to school and the story will cycle out of the news reports.
Yes, of course we should be thankful that no innocent lives were lost. But a school shooting is still traumatic for every student and parent who lives through it. This sad event still means that a shooter got a gun into a place of learning, where innocent students should be safe. This is one more time that a gun was used to cause mayhem, terror and harm. This is one more person who didn’t care about the lives of others.
Every school shooting, no matter what type of victim toll it amounts to, should be considered a huge issue. It should add to our determination to do something, anything, to combat the intense level of violence that plagues our country. It should double our urgency to get intelligent and thoughtful gun control in place.
It’s been 28 days since the Sandy Hook shooting shook our nation to the core. Less than a month and we already have another day of violence at a US school. Personally, I don’t know how many more of these days I can take.