One of my best friends who works as a youth pastor called me up this morning to let me know that he had to cancel our Spring Retreat planning meeting scheduled for today. The reason for his cancellation was because multiple students from his youth ministry had been stabbed at school this morning.
Stabbed. In. School.
Let that sink in people.
I was in 9th grade when Columbine occurred. I remember the panic and chaos, the rules and regulations and the thought that we’d be able to prevent the next one. There have been so many “Columbines” since April 20th 1999, almost too many to count.
If this feels “terrifyingly normal” to you; you are not alone. It seems that every day as we scroll through social media we see news reports of shootings, stabbings and bombings. It feels as if the whole world is going collectively insane. You can’t even go see a movie without wondering if you might get shot.
We are learning that people don’t need bombs or guns to do evil. Knives will do as well.
After I got off the phone with my friend I looked at my wife and told her “As soon as we can we are going to enroll our boys in martial arts of some kind and then eventually military training.” You may think that I am just being overly dramatic, but can our children afford to be ill prepared anymore? What practical lessons could be more valuable in this world than how to dodge a knife swipe, duck a shooter or avoid a bomb?
Maybe all of our kids need to be trained in survival skills and close quarter combat. Maybe we need to hire ex-military instead of gym teachers to teach our kids what to do in a crisis, not because these kids at Franklin handled it badly, but because it has become such a present reality.
Also, while we are on the subject, I am sick of “security guards” in schools who don’t get the job done. Every single school must hire a tactically trained, fully armed Special Forces operative; somebody who at the blink of an eye could neutralize any threat. Hire two or three. If we can pay superintendents hundreds of thousands of dollars we can afford to protect our children more effectively.
Perhaps some of our trusted teachers need to be carrying concealed weapons.
We cannot ignore the problem and hope that it just goes away.
I’m not happy that this is the world we live in; however we need to be as prepared as possible.
It’s not getting any better.