Social media has been blowing up in the wake of the latest mass school shooting in the United States.
On the afternoon of Feb. 14, a mass shooting occurred at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, in the Miami metropolitan area. Seventeen people were killed and fifteen more were taken to hospitals.
In what is becoming a far-too common story among U.S. headlines, the camps on both sides of the gun control debate have come out in droves.
Also, concerns are very strong north of the border, given many Canadians have family and friends who reside in the United States.
While Canada’s stance over the years has been implementing checks and balances in its gun culture that is very alive and well given its gun ownership per capita, the United States seems to be going in the opposite direction of either the status quo or encouraging a bigger gun presence to ensure its safety.
The Second Amendment seems to be bullet proof in the American Constitution, even though the very word amendment means it can be changed. Three-fourths of the states have to approve the amendment for it to become law. In the past 200 years, the Constitution has been amended 27 times, but never the Second Amendment.
Turning schools into armed fortresses, with metal detectors in every school is a common refrain from more conservative residents.
Putting aside whether one believes more guns is the answer, how is such a bold endeavour even fiscally and logistically possible?
President Donald Trump’s first full budget proposal last year featured department after department getting their funding slashed by 10 per cent or more, including the Department of Education being slashed by 13.5 per cent.
In the wake of conservative fiscal belt tightening, it is hard to believe the nation all the sudden has ample funding to arm every teacher/security officer, train them in military tactics, retrofit schools to make them more threat ready and of course navigating through the logistical nightmares of insurance and the very real chance a teacher may critically injure an innocent bystander in the mass hysteria if a mass shooting were to occur.
Student survivors organized the group Never Again MSD in the aftermath of the shooting. Never Again MSD held a rally on February 17, 2018 in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida, attended by hundreds of supporters.
The Women’s March Network is planning a 17-minute school walkout on March 14. “March for Our Lives”, a nationwide student demonstration which will include a march in Washington, D.C., is planned for March 24.
However one stands on the gun control debate in North America, the United States seems to be at a tipping point where action will be implemented either way.
The mounting deaths of youth means the status quo is acceptable no more where thoughts and prayers just don’t cut it anymore.