Texas massacre shocks, but gunfire at U.S. schools at record high -Breaking
© Reuters. FILEPHOTO: Residents in Cleveland Park in Northwest Washington hold their hands high as local police rescue them from a shooting scene.
By Tim Reid
LOS ANGELES (Reuters] – Tuesday saw three wounded students outside a Washington D.C. elementary school. On the same day, three teens were also shot leaving their Philadelphia high school. There were three high school shootings last week in Tennessee, Louisiana and Michigan.
Gunfire is increasing at U.S schools at an unprecedented rate, with almost every school being hit by a weapon this year according to David Riedman who studies such events.
Experts warned that there is a steady stream of small incidents throughout the day, even as Americans are reeling from Tuesday’s massacre at Texas Elementary School.
Riedman (lead researcher at K-12 School Shooting, Naval Postgraduate School’s Center for Homeland Defense and Security) said that there has been nearly one shooting incident per day at schools this year. This system tracks all incidents in which guns are used or fired, as well as any bullets that hit school property.
The rise in school violence, particularly at high schools, is becoming increasingly common. Riedman said that this is because students carry weapons and the conflict has escalated to the point at which gun violence can occur.
Riedman reported that there had been other school shootings in the United States, which included seven victims and 77 others, before Tuesday’s massacre at Robb Elementary School, Uvalde.
School shootings are becoming more deadly. James Densley, cofounder of The Violence Project which monitors mass shootings that result in four deaths or more, identifies the deadliest three school shootings.
These shootings included the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting in 2012, where 26 school children were killed by a gunman; Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland in 2018, which resulted in 17 deaths; and the massacre on Tuesday in Texas.
American school children are constantly at risk of being killed in ways that it is not in many other countries. From a very young age students learn to conceal in locked classrooms and use active shooter drills.
Schools lock their front and classroom doors daily to prevent potential gunmen from entering the school. Texas even has a program for school marshals, which allows teachers to carry guns.
Schools safety has been a growing concern due to the increase in school shootings. Schools have invested in bullet-proof windows and doors as well special locks and metal detectors. Others have hired armed security guards.
Densley stated that guns are still a problem on campuses, and they continue to be used with deadly consequences.