Florida High School Shootout: Are School Children Meant to Die Senselessly, asks a Mother

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If we look at the statistics of gun violence in schools, it is a staggering data of numbers. Since 2013, there have been 290 incidents in which a gun was discharged on a school campus in America, according to ‘Everytown’. That makes a gunshot incident every week. Anumita, our Managing Editor, says that the news of shooting in a High School in Florida, has been heart-wrenching, for every parent, in the US and world over, that mourned the deaths of 17 children. A Different Truths exclusive.

It is Valentine’s Day. The day designated for love. Love and be loved. I switch on the television news while deciding what to cook. The news reporter announces a breaking news. A High School in Florida is now a victim of a shooting. I drop the pan I had just taken out of the shelf. My heart pounds and my eyes mist up. Seventeen dead they say. I sit down. I am a mother and the image of those children crowd my mind.

This is not new. It has happened so many times, over and over again, in some school or the other, all around the nation. I cover my mouth so that my cries get muffled. There is no one in the house but still, I cannot let my cries be heard.

There are so many mothers and fathers crying out there. Can’t anyone hear them? Have we all gone deaf?  I instinctively pick my phone. Text my children, one in high school and other in college. Just a “hi, hope you are having a good day.” The screen blurs. I am selfish. I am thinking about my children. We parents are.

Those parents who lost their babies are scarred for life. A senseless act of a person creates a vacuum which will never fill up. Those bullets did not only riddle their children’s bodies, they scooped the parents, family, and friends hollow.

Why cannot our leaders hear the ricochet of these bullets? Are they so incapable or do they choose to ignore it?

Laws are made to keep people safe and to maintain order. When a law does just the opposite, it needs to be amended. The easy availability of a weapon is the root cause. Every shooting cannot boil down to just a mentally unstable person being the perpetrator. If mental instability is such rampant, then guns should be made difficult to obtain, and strict laws put in place.

If we look at the statistics of gun violence in schools, it is a staggering data of numbers. Since 2013, there have been 290 incidents in which a gun was discharged on a school campus in America, according to Everytown. That makes a gunshot incident every week.

The question is anything being done to keep our children and teachers safe. Schools are institutes of learning and development, not a place where fear breeds. Many parents are feeling the fear and opting to homeschool their children. I am a mom who thinks that conventional schooling is good for my children, as they need their day to day peers and teachers to interact and learn from.

Every day, when my child leaves in the early morning hours, I stand at the door watch his back till he disappears at the bend of the road. He walks to his bus stop. A few minutes later I hear the bus pass and leave. A little prayer leaves my lips, keep him safe. I am sure all parents do that.

If I need a prayer for him every day just because he is going to school, then I think we are living in a very dangerous world.

©Anumita Chatterjee Roy

Photos from the Internet

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Anumita Chatterjee Roy is an artist at heart. She has an eye for the unusual. Her naturescapes make her the quintessential Romantic. She paints, is passionate about photography, creates word images in her verses and loves to write. She cooks delicacies and is a foodie. Born in India, she was brought up in several countries. These strengthened the global citizen in her. She now lives in the Columbus, Ohio, with her husband and two sons.