Guns have no place in a learning environment but they for damn sure have no place in the subconscious bias hands of a white teacher with Black students.
As years go by, school shootings are occurring more frequently in American society. While concerns for the safety of students never withered, the most recent school shooting on February 14 seems to have been the last straw. People want a solution.
Unfortunately, Americans are torn on how to go about resolving the issue. Some are calling for gun control while others, like Donald Trump, suggest we start arming teachers.
Needless to say, the idea of giving school staff weapons is not sitting well with many parents. One of those parents is Atlanta mom and educator, Danielle Slaughter.
Slaughter very clearly recalls the horrific shootings that took place at Columbine High School and Virginia Tech. Though the two tragedies worried her, it wasn’t until that fateful day on December 14, 2012, at Sandy Hook Elementary that it started to hit closer to home. Slaughter and her husband had just their first child, a boy, nine months prior. When she heard the news, she held her baby boy tightly, wondering “what would happen to his dad if someone opened fire at the elementary school where he taught.” At the time she says it still hadn’t registered that one day her child would be inside one of those buildings as well.
In the years since Sandy Hook, dozens more school shootings shook the nation. Though she’s often feared for her own safety, as well as that of her students and colleagues, the thought of her son’s safety still hadn’t crossed her mind.
That was until the Stoneman Douglas High School massacre just over a week ago. When she heard the news, she remembers feeling “violently ill.” But, why?
Well, her firstborn now attends kindergarten and her husband teaches at a “middle school on the upper campus with an adjoining high school.” Now, her fear of a shooting happening has spread to two different places.
As she’s observed students and parents implore for solutions and gun control, Slaughter says she’s seen lawmaker go against their wishes, instead suggesting that instructors be armed while on campus.
The Atlanta mother of two makes it very clear that putting guns in the hands of White teachers would endanger the lives of Black and Brown children.
In addition to young White female teachers feeling threatened by Black boys “as young as eight years old,” Slaughter asserts that Black and Brown children are disciplined at a rate disproportionate to that of their White peers. Not to mention Black girls are disciplined more harshly than their peers. Let’s also not neglect to mention physical discipline has been banned in most states for more than 20 years.
Other reasons parents like Slaughter stand firm on their belief teachers should not be armed include:
And you think that the solution to school shootings is for me to send my Black child to a school with armed white teachers?
Physical discipline has been banned in schools but I’m supposed to be okay with teachers walking around with guns as “protection?”
Parents are told to keep guns locked up where our children can not access them but you want a teacher to have a gun in a classroom of 25-30 (or more) children?
How long before breaking up a spat between the kids leads to the death of a Black child?
How long before teachers use the threat of a gun to discipline a child?
How long before an angry child disarms a teacher and makes a life-altering decision?
If the police who are supposed to be professionally trained in these matters, can’t tell the difference between a toy gun and a real one, how am I supposed to trust a teacher?
Is this just another step in the prison to pipeline mission? Seriously, what is the real agenda?
Given the aforementioned reasons, Slaughter believes banning assault rifles and additional measures that “make it harder to get a gun” would be much more acceptable.
If lawmakers and voters decide to move forward with this “solution,” effectively making children of color “guinea pigs for a new police state,” parents like Slaughter WILL pull their kids out school.
What do you think a proper solution would be to fix stop these tragedies?