The voice of the student.

The Wave

Breaking News
  • May 30Have a safe, productive, and fun summer...GOOOO RAYS!
  • May 14Fare thee well senior class - thanks for sharing your voice...
The voice of the student.

The Wave

The voice of the student.

The Wave

The Critical Debate On Gun Violence In The United States

A+recent+school+shooting+in+Texas%2C+making+many+wonder+if+the+Tennessee+Bill+is+a+good+idea.+Photo+credits+to+%28Augustin-Foto%29+Jonas+Augustin+via+Unsplash+under+the+Unsplash+license.
A recent school shooting in Texas, making many wonder if the Tennessee Bill is a good idea. Photo credits to (Augustin-Foto) Jonas Augustin via Unsplash under the Unsplash license.

In a world where safety is a top concern, Marco Island Academy stands out as a secure haven from the threats of gun violence. Situated on an island in southwest Florida, this small public high school puts the safety of its students first. With the help of the island’s police and modern technology, Marco Island Academy ensures a protected environment for learning. Access cards and cameras are used to keep the campus secure. 

Unfortunately, not all schools in the United States have such measures in place. Many lack basic security like access cards, making them more vulnerable to violent attacks. Recent events in Northern Texas underscore the importance of improving security measures in schools nationwide.

Recently, the United States has been faced with a recurring issue involving educators and students nationwide. With approximately 18 school shootings having already occurred this year, the tragic events of April 26th, 2024, at a high school in Northern Texas marked the 19th shooting this year. The attack unfolded at Arlington’s James Bowie High School and has left many nearby communities enveloped in sorrow and despair.

Incidents like these shock us to our core, reminding us of the value of life and the urgent need for action to prevent such violence. Etavion Barnes, an 18 year-old student at James Bowie High School, tragically passed away shortly after school resource officers discovered him “lying unresponsive on the ground,” as reported by the Arlington Police Department.

The 17-year-old shooter was apprehended at the scene and subsequently charged with one count of murder, with bail set at over $750,000.

This situation, and many similar incidents, instill fear in many students and teachers across the country, highlighting that the impact of school shootings stretches far beyond the immediate victims and their families. They sow seeds of sorrow and terror throughout entire communities, leaving students, teachers, parents, and neighbors to battle with feelings of disbelief, rage, and grief, as they struggle to comprehend the incomprehensible. In the aftermath of the devastating Texas shooting, the damage inflicted upon the victim and their loved ones is irreparable. Consequently, as the effects of mass shootings continue to plague the United States, many are left with the same question: What comes next?

As the debate continues, gun regulation, mental health services, and school safety remain large topics of discussion. However, there is no singular solution to these recurring tragedies.

Many advocate for the implementation of practical measures to enhance school safety while addressing the underlying causes of gun violence. Nevertheless, on Friday, April 16th, Tennessee’s government official, Bill Lee, signed a new bill that left many concerned for the safety of individuals within the state’s education system. The bill, which went into effect on Thursday, April 25th, permits any teacher in the state of Tennessee to carry firearms on school property.

In an article published in The Tennessean, Sumner County Schools Director Scott Langford shared her thoughts on the bill’s advancement. 

“Our teachers and principals already play a critical role in school safety by ensuring that our safety procedures are followed in our school buildings daily. We do not want to add one more task or responsibility to them.” 

Furthermore, the legislation mandates that teachers undergo up to 40 hours of firearms training to carry weapons on campus, raising alarm about potential safety risks if improperly trained. State Representative Bo Mitchell voiced criticism, stating, “This is our reaction to students and teachers being murdered in a school? Our reaction is to throw more guns at it. What’s wrong with us?”

As concerns rise, the future of our students and educators’ safety is at risk. Implementing a solution is imperative to addressing these incidents and fostering a safe learning environment.

One solution to this issue is the enforcement of effective gun control laws preventing firearms from falling into the wrong hands. This includes stricter reinforcements of thorough background checks during the process of purchasing firearms, as well as restrictions on gun ownership for those with histories of violent mental illness. 

Such measures can help curb illegal weapon trafficking and ensure safety for students and educators around the country, thereby addressing the root cause of gun violence in schools. 

While the bill sets a precedent, there’s a risk of similar legislation falling upon other states, amplifying the threat to our nation. However, in light of the Arlington shooting, what will it take to truly fight gun violence? Neglecting the problem won’t make it disappear. As students, educators, and ordinary citizens, it now falls upon us to speak out against the violence plaguing our society and ensure the safety that we all deserve.

Leave a Comment
Donate to The Wave
$495
$1200
Contributed
Our Goal

Your donation will help support not only the student Journalism and Yearbook clubs at Marco Island Academy, but as well as any new equipment, club improvements, and annual website hosting costs.

More to Discover
About the Contributor
Skylar Siems
Skylar Siems, Associate Editor
Skylar Siems is a junior at Marco Island Academy and a Associate Editor for The Wave. In her free time she enjoys listening to music, attending concerts, and hibernating in her room. She loves spending way too much money on clothes and coffee, especially if it is from Dunkin’. After high school she plans on attending college but isn’t sure what she wants to do just yet!
Donate to The Wave
$495
$1200
Contributed
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Wave Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *