Let me say it one more time…
The Terrorists Have Won.
As a former student of this particular school, let me be the first to tell you this situation is in fact eye-rolling-worthy. Not just because The Terrorists Have Won, but because it’s about as real as a three dollar bill. The idea of CE King students “dropping knives” inconspicuously is award-winningly laughable.
For the sake of moving the discussion forward though, I will observe a suspension of reality.
We see this phenomenon everywhere – a single incident or threat of an incident reminds everyone of the dangerous nature of the world in general and we all go up in arms about safety.
Of course, the larger the scale the larger the panic cue my constant reference to the phrase The Terrorists Have Won.
In this case though, I think they really have.
The metal detectors and police presence is one thing, but today (the day after the incident) has been ruled a no-backpack-day. For safety reasons.
Now, I don’t know about you, but all that meant to me in high school was “I’m not going to do anything, so deal with it.”
Seriously though, fuck that noise.
For the sake of my word count, let’s briefly go over how the terrorists win:
Step 1 – inflict terror either through action or words
Step 2 – people are terrorized
Step 3 – people do stupid things because they’re afraid
Nothing about the quality of student attending that school has changed, and nothing has changed about the quality of the surrounding area. The fact of the matter is that a week ago it was just as likely a student would bring a gun to school as it is today or tomorrow or next week or next month.
Terrorists win when we sacrifice our freedoms out of fear. When a school decides to grant everyone what is essentially a free day (if you don’t think those CE King students are going to refuse to do any work because “they didn’t bring anything with them” then you’re very naive, obtuse, or both) it says to the terrorist “As long as you make us fear there won’t be any work done in this school.”
Don’t think this is any kind of isolated incident either – this happens all the time, all over. When there is a robbery or an assault people take notice, and they adjust or otherwise change their way of doing things to account for this despite the risk always being present. They haven’t moved into a more dangerous area – they’re just temporarily more aware of the area they live in.
Fear is a powerful tool, and there’s nothing a tool of an individual wants more than power.
The answer isn’t to adapt to living in fear, but to create an environment with nothing to fear.
That requires work and effort and a sense of community though – particularly form the concerned parents of these children.
Nah, screw it, we’ll just rely on the absolutely wonderful minds of Sheldon ISD and other great American education districts (that never fail at anything and do absolutely great jobs at making sure the American youth stays academically competitive on a global scale) to protect the children from violence.