By Courtney Johnson
News about it shows up all over – the topic of guns and gun control relate to most of society no matter the stance taken. Much of the controversy around gun control crops up at times of great tragedy, mainly those concerning children. From school shootings to accidental deaths, these events make the news alongside questions such as: is enough done to protect people? Is a child’s safety guaranteed?
In many of the incidents the weapons come from the home. According to USA Today, nearly 800 children under 14 died in gun accidents from 1999 to 2010. While it may not seem like many children, it’s an estimated six children a month. That means three average size elementary classes disappearing per year.
Another major point of concern is violence involving guns at school. Since Columbine in 1999, one of the first major school shootings, 16 deadly events occurred at schools across the nation. Through these tragedies, 110 lives ended due to gun violence and many more injured.
Following a threat of violence on all San Antonio schools the previous week, former student Brendan Tarwater brought three guns on campus along with a threat to the school. It is said Tarwater retrieved the weapons from his home, where a majority of weapons come from in acts of school violence.
Many question whether guns in the home need better containment and what needs fixing. Lock boxes and safes are one option, but people feel that these make access to guns during a break-in difficult, diminishing the reason behind the gun in the first place.
Those who advocate for gun rights feel that the best way to protect the children in school is to arm teachers, and teach kids either the proper way to handle a gun or what to do when they find a gun. Yet, a study done by ABC News showed that most of the kids who encountered the gun they placed in a classroom did not report them but instead pointed them at each other. This shows that no matter how informed children may become, they don’t necessarily act according to the information they’re given.
Stricter gun control laws could help prevent deadly events, such as accidental death and school shootings, from happening in the future while keeping our children safe and lowering violence in the country.