Thursday, April 5, 2012

Nine Year Old Shoots Classmate, Writes Apology Letter.

Gotta hand it to him, his handwriting is better than mine.
  So according to The Seattle Times, in late February a third grader from Bremerton,Washington brought a loaded handgun to school in his backpack he then hit his bag too hard on the desk causing the gun to discharge and hit one of his classmates in the spine. He pleaded guilty to a few charges and is undergoing counseling, the little girl he accidentally shot is currently on a feeding tube and still has a bullet lodged in her spine. Life is going to be hard for both of these kids, I'm a little unclear as to if the little girl can still walk or not but you aren't going to be able to do a lot of things with a bullet in your spine. How does something like this happen? My guess might sound a cliche to some people, but more then likely this kid was probably bullied and felt that the only way to stop it would be to hopefully just scare the kids who were picking on him. 

 I have a funny stance on bullying, having been both the bully and the bullied. I think bullying is just something people do. I might have been blessed with tougher skin than others, I never really wanted to kill anyone or cause harm to myself so it's hard for me to be strictly anti-bullying. I'm one of the few who thinks Dahrun Ravi shouldn't be held responsible for the death of Tyler Clementi. He didn't push him off that bridge. Since that incident we start seeing all these laws crop up around the country that actual impede on free speech and I'm torn on whether to be in favor or against them. What a lot of people don't seem to get is that in the end you're throwing kids in jail for what usually just happens to be pranks that have gone terrible wrong. You're putting administrators in lose-lose situations, if they truly neglect their duties to protect children then come after them but they shouldn't be held responsible for things they more than likely have no idea is happening. You can't solve bullying by passing laws and feeding the prison industrial complex, but what we can do is provide education, awareness and better equip schools to counsel students who may have emotional issues. Provide students with the opportunity to speak to someone about their problems whether they're the bully or getting bullied and you'll see changes. But maybe that's just my utilitarianism views. 

Overall, this is a tragedy, that may or may not have been avoidable. I hope everything works out for both of these children and their families.

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