Gun violence has been increasing over the years
By: JoJo B-P. ’25
On Tuesday November 8th, Ingraham High School senior student Ebenezer Haile (17) was shot five times from behind in a school hallway by a 14 year old who is said to have had a 15 year old accomplice. At the Northwest School we hear about school shootings that happen in different states, which gives us some distance from the issue. Unfortunately we now have to get rid of that false sense of security because Ingraham High is only 8.9 miles away from our school. What happened at Ingraham is not a stand-alone event; there have been thousands of school shootings in the past 3 years.
Only 15 days before the Ingraham High School shooting there was another shooting at Central VPA performing arts high school, in St. Louis, Missouri. The killer murdered an innocent student, Alexandria Bell (17), and a teacher Jean Kuckza (61), while injuring at least 7 others. The USA is not doing enough to protect students from gun violence.
School shootings in the United States have increased dramatically from 2018 to 2021. In 2018 there were 119 school shootings in the States, in 2019 it decreased to a total of 114. In 2021 there were 250 school shootings. The year of 2022 there have been a total of 258 shootings on school campuses. So far in this current school year of 2022 to 2023 there have been 35 school shootings.
All of these school shootings include any time any firearm has been discharged, lately the AR-15 rifle has been more commonly used. According to the NRA the AR-15 rifle is the most popular rifle in America. Americans own more than 8 million of them. The number of school shootings include gang-related violence, suicides, targeted shootings, accidental shootings, and random firing of shots as a joke in places like the hallways. They occur in classrooms, parking lots, football fields, cafeterias, and gyms. One would have hoped that the US would ban guns and any form of weapons for those who are not hunters (with permits), police officers, or those who work in the armed forces after the Columbine High School Massacre. The Columbine High School massacre occurred at 11:19 April 20, 1999 to be exact. 12 innocent students and 1 teacher were murdered, while 24 others were injured.
This continuous violence has been showing in deadly and tragic ways throughout the years. There have been too many school shootings. Some of the biggest examples would be:
- The Virginia Tech School shooting in Blacksburg, Virginia on April 16, 2007. Victims: 32 people killed and 17 others injured.
- The Marysville Pilchuck High School shooting in Marysville, WA on October 24, 2014. Victims: 5 people killed and 3 others injured.
- The Umpqua Community College shooting in Roseburg, Oregon on October 1, 2015. Victims: 9 people killed and 8 others injured.
- The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre in Parkland, Florida Shooting on February 14, 2018. Victims: 17 people killed and 17 others injured.
- The Santa Fe High School in Santa Fe, Texas shooting on May 18, 2018. Victims: 10 killed and 14 others injured.
- The Red Lake Senior High School in Red Lake, Minnesota shooting on May 21, 2005. Victims: 10 people killed and 5 others injured.
- The Oikos University in Oakland, California shooting on April 2, 2012. Victims: 7 killed and 3 others injured.
- The West Nickel Mines School in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania femicide shooting on October 2, 2006. Victims: 6 people and 5 others injured. The West Nickel Mines School was demolished only a little bit afterwards. The New Hope School was built at a different location, and opened on April 2, 2007.
- The Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012. Victims: 28 people killed and 2 others injured. After having been affected majorly, the nationwide program Sandy Hook Promise was created to help kids, young adults, and teenagers. It helps students and saves lives.
- The Uvalde Robb Elementary School massacre in Uvalde Texas on May 24th, 2022. Victims: 21 people killed and 17 others injured.
- Club Q: Although this article is about gun violence in schools, the mass shooting in the bar, Club Q in Colorado Springs should be acknowledged. Our hearts are also to the five people who were killed in the LGBTQ club. The five victims were identified as Kelly Loving, Daniel Aston, Derrick Rump, Ashley Paugh, and Raymond Green Vance. Make sure to donate to Club Q’s GoFundMe.
There have been many other shootings and massacres, but these are the largest since the Columbine High School massacre.
There are too many school shootings. It is not okay, and it is time that the U.S. takes action to stop all of this gun violence. Many believe that firearms should be banned in general, arguing that they have encouraged gun violence. The way the second amendment is being interpreted today has been damaging to the lives of many. It has made America incredibly unsafe to live in, and turned schools into warzones.
There have been many attempts to reinterpret the second amendment, but students are fighting for something different: to repeal it completely. Here at Northwest School in the sophomore humanities curriculum we had an assignment to make an argument for a question in a structured academic controversy way. We were broken off into groups of four. Two people were assigned to be “yes” the other two were assigned to be “no”. One of the few given questions to talk about in class that some students had been assigned is whether the second amendment should be repealed. A sophomore student I talked to said that he thought that “the second amendment’s place in America today has done a lot more harm than good. I think that it was better suited for the time that it was written, but today it has been nothing but the cause of a lot of death.” He’s right, the increasing numbers of deaths every day has been a major reason for people owning arms, especially underaged citizens or citizens who have very big mental health problems.
On November 14th, students at Ingraham led a march to peacefully protest gun violence. The hope that the march would make an impact is a big one. To learn more about the Ingraham march read the Publishing Haus’s 2022 winter print edition article, “A March for Our Lives” by Renata S. ‘24 and Maddie S. ‘24.
A student from Northwest said that she believed “in the hope for change.” She said that the hope is strong with everyone together and that she hopes there will be a change and everyone can be safe. One BIPOC student said that she was “tired of the word ‘safe’ because ‘safe’ is not for everyone. When we stop gun violence at schools, there’s still the issue of whether BIPOC people are safe. What about police brutality? When we say ending gun violence do we mean ending it for BIPOC folks too? Will there be a fight for everyone to be safe? I walk around and feel unsafe around those who are supposed to be fighting for my safety. Police officers shoot BIPOC people left and right, and it’s always pushed away. There was the issue with George Floyd, that didn’t use a gun, but it feels like the world has already forgotten.” It’s hard to understand what the word “safe” means anymore, but enforcing more laws to protect people from guns is hopefully a step towards positive change.
With a similar point of view, student Luna Crone-Baron was interviewed by KIRO-FM. When asked what she thought of inserting police officers into schools as security she said, “What I know is that the way we’re not going to be kept safe is with more police presence in schools. As we’ve seen, more police presence in schools only leads to more violence in schools. We do not need more violent police officers violently bullying and harassing students in school. I will never support any policing in schools. Schools should be a place that is automatically safe, where kids are nurtured and loved, and not killed.”
It is time to stop selling guns to underaged citizens, people who have mental health issues, and anyone in general. The second amendment is bringing harm to so many people. Security and safety is not going to be solved by simply placing police officers in schools. Feeling unsafe is not going to be solved by putting the murderer in jail and waiting for the next one to shoot their shot. It is time for the government to really put their foot down and do what is right. It’s time to either repeal the second amendment or reinterpret it in a way that takes into account all of the lives that have been taken and minorities.
Although at NWS we haven’t had a school shooting, I know for a fact that I speak for everyone when I say that our hearts are with all of the lives that have been taken. There is no excuse for this violence whether the murderer had mental health issues or was feeling “lonely.” It’s time to make some changes.
The Victims Whose Lives Were Taken Way Too Early (Let’s Make Sure to Say Their Names):
The Columbine High School Massacre:
- Ross A. Alameddine (20)
- Christopher James Bishop (35)
- Brian R. Bluhm (25)
- Ryan Christopher Clark (22)
- Austin Michelle Cloyd (18)
- Jocelyne Couture Nowak (49)
- Kevin P. Granata (45)
- Matthew Gregory Gwaltney (24)
- Caitlin Millar Hammaren (19)
- Jeremy Michael Herbstritt (27)
- Rachael Elizabeth Hill (18)
- Emily Jane Hilscher (19)
- Jarrett Lee Lane (22)
- Matthew Joseph La Porte (20)
- Henry J. Lee (20)
- Liviu Librescu (76)
- G.V. Loganathan (51)
- Partahi Mamora Halomoan Lumbantoruan (34)
- Lauren Ashley McCain (20)
- Daniel Patrick O’Neal (22)
- Juan Ramon Ortiz Oritz (26)
- Minal Hiralal Panchal (26)
- Daniel Alejandro Perez Cueva (21)
- Michael Steven Pohle, Jr. (23)
- Julia Kathleen Pryde (23)
- Mary Karen Read (19)
- Reema Joseph Samaha (18)
- Waleed Mohamed Shaalan (32)
- Leslie Geraldine Sherman (20)
- Maxine Shelly Turner (22)
- Nicole Regina White (20)
Marysville Pilchuck High School Shooting Victims:
- Zoe Galasso (14)
- Gia Soriano (14)
- Shaylee Chuckulnaskit (14)
- Andrew Fryberg (15)
Umpqua Community College Shooting Victims:
- Lucero Alcaraz (19)
- Treven Taylor Anspach (20)
- Rebecka Ann Carnes (18)
- Quinn Glen Cooper (18)
- Kim Saltmarsh Dietz (59)
- Lucas Eibel (18)
- Jason Dale Johnson (33)
- Lawrence Levine (67)
- Sarena Dawn Moore (43)
Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Shooting Victims:
- Alyssa Alhadeff (14)
- Scott Beigel (35)
- Martin Duque (14)
- Nick Dworet (17)
- Aaron Feis (37)
- Jaime Guttenberg (14)
- Christopher Hixon (49)
- Luke Hoyer (15)
- Cara Loughran (14)
- Gina Montalto (14)
- Joaquin Oliver (17)
- Alaina Petty (14)
- Meadow Pollack (18)
- Helena Ramsay (17)
- Alex Schachter (14)
- Carmen Schentrup (16)
- Peter Wang (15) (He won the Junior ROTC Heroism Medal from the U.S. Army. According to students and teachers he had died in his junior ROTC uniform while helping staff, faculty, and students escape from danger.)
Santa Fe High School Shooting Victims:
- Kyle Mcleod (15)
- Angelique Ramirez (15)
- Kimberly Vaughan (14)
- Cynthia Tisdale (63)
- Sabika Sheikh (17)
- Chris Stone (17)
- Jared Black (17)
- Shana Fisher (16)
- Glenda Ann Perkins (64)
- Christian Riley Garcia (15)
Red Lake Senior High School Shooting Victims:
- Daryl Lussier, (58)
- Michelle Sigana, (32)
- Derrick Brun, (28)
- Alicia White, (15)
- Neva Rogers (62)
- Thurlene Stillday (15)
- Chanelle Rosebear (15)
- Chase Lussier (15)
- Dewayne Lewis (15)
Oikos University Shooting Victims:
- Tshering Rinzing Bhutia (38)
- Doris Chibuko (40)
- Sonam Choedon (33)
- Grace Eunhae Kim (23)
- Kathleen Ping (24)
- Judith Seymour (53)
- Lydia Sim (21)
West Nickel Mines School Shooting Victims:
- Naomi Rose Ebersol (7) – 2nd grader at WNM. Loving daughter of Amos and Katie Ann Fisher Ebersol. Sister of her five brothers: Marcus, Ervin, James, Amos Jr., and Marvin Ebersol.
- Marian Stoltzfus Fisher (13) – Marian and her sister had told the killer to shoot them first hoping to buy time for the police to come, and hoping that the other girls would be spared. Barbara Fisher survived, but her sister did not.
- Anna Mae Stoltzfus (12) – Loving daughter of Christ K. and Lizzie L. Allgyer Stoltzfus.
- Lena Zook Miller (8) – Lena died at Hershey Medical Center. Lena was the loving daughter of Christ and Rachel Zook Miller. Sister of Mary Miller, Susan Miller, Lester Miller, and Abram Miller.
- Mary Liz Miller (7) – Mary died at Christiana Hospital. Mary was also a loving daughter of Christ and Rachel Zook Miller. Sister of Lena Miller, Susan Miller, Lester Miller, and Abram Miller.
Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting Victims:
- Jessica Rekos (6)
- Olivia Engel (6)
- Avielle Richman (6) – Avielle was the loving daughter of Jeremy Richman and Jennifer Hensel. Avielle loved lots of things, the color red, Harry Potter, and horses. She tried archery after watching the Disney movie “Brave”. Avielle was a funny and light child. She had moved to Sandy Hook two years prior to the shooting. According to a family friend it was hard to keep shoes on Avielle because she was used to the beaches in San Diego. The Avielle Foundation is a neuroscience non profit that was created in her name to prevent violence, and build compassion through brain health research, community engagement, and education.
- Jesse Lewis (6) – Jesse died bravely trying to help his classmates escape. Jesse had run into the hallway to help when he heard the gunshots. He was the loving son of his parents Scarlett Lewis and Neil Heslin, and the brother of JT Lewis. His courage will never be forgotten.
- Grace Audrey McDonell (7)
- Noah Pozner (6)
- Ana Marquez-Greene (6)
- Emilie Parker (6)
- Charlotte Bacon (6)
- Catherine Hubbard (6)
- Josephine Gay (7)
- Daniel Barden (7)
- James Mattioli (6)
- Caroline Previdi (6)
- Alison Wyatt (6)
- Dylan Hockley (6)
- Madeline Hsu (6)
- Chase Kowalski (7)
- Jack Pinto (6)
- Benjamin Wheeler (6)
- Victoria Soto (27) – Soto died when protecting her students, putting herself in between the killer and the students. She tried to hide her students in the classroom’s closet.
- Lauren Rousseau (30) – Rousseau tried to hide her students in the bathroom, Lanza found them and killed Lauren and every single one of her students except for one person.
- Dawn Hochsprung (47) – Hochsprung was the new principal of Sandy Hook elementary school, she died when heroically giving up her life to take down Lanza before he could go further into the school. She was fatally shot down by Lanza while trying to stop him from killing any of her students.
- Mary Sherlach (56) – Sherlach was the school’s psychologist, she died while helping Dawn attempt to take Lanza down at the front of the school. She put her life on the line, not thinking about herself but her students.
- Rachel Davino (29) – Davino was a behavioral therapist at Sandy Hook. She had barricaded the classroom to try and protect the students but Lanza got in and killed them all.
- Anne Marie Murphy (52) – Murphy was a paraprofessional at the school. She died trying to shield Dylan Hockley from Lanza. Murphy’s body was found covering a group of students having tried to protect them, with Dylan Hockley in her arms.
- Nancy Lanza (52) – Was the killer’s mother. Nancy has been killed by her son before he went to Sandy Hook and massacred students, faculty, teachers, and administrators alike.
Uvalde Robb Elementary School Shooting Victims:
- Xavier Lopez (10)
- Uziyah Garcia (9)
- Alexandria “Lexi” Aniyah Rubio (10)
- Tess Mata (10)
- Amerie Jo garza (10)
- Jose Florez (10)
- Jayce Luevanos (10)
- Jailah Nicole Silguero (10)
- Miranda Mathis (11)
- Annabell Guadalupe Rodriguez (10)
- Jackie Cazares (10)
- Alithia Ramirez (10)
- Elli Garcia (10)
- Makenna Lee Elrod (10)
- Nevah Bravo (10)
- Eliahana “Elijah” Cruz Torres (10)
- Maite Yuleana Rodriquez (10)
- Layla Salazar (10)
- Eva Mireles (44) – She died when she was at the hospital. Mireles had called her husband, officer Ruben Ruiz (a police officer) during the scene. He was on the campus grounds and was caught on camera looking at his phone while students were being shot in two adjoining classrooms. There has been lots of anger towards the officer because he was on his phone while his wife and many parent’s children were being killed on the other side of the wall.
- Irma Garcia (48) – She died in the adjoining classroom where Salvador Ramos had begun to open fire, while trying to protect her students.
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