June 25, 2022 In the News

OPINION: We Can Keep Our Schools and Communities Safe From Gun Violence

“I remember being in elementary school, huddled in the corner of a dark classroom as my teacher locked the door and instructed us to be silent. As I observed my peers, I noticed an array of behaviors in response to practicing the most terrifying scenario we could have imagined. Some stricken with anxiety, others silently crying with their heads in their laps, and others with smiles on their faces, chuckling ever so quietly as we conducted the active shooter drill.

I was one of those kids who smiled — viewing the active shooter drill as a thrilling game of hide-and-go-seek. As a 7-year-old child, I could not comprehend the magnitude of what was taking place. But underneath my smile was the feeling of fear. I couldn’t help but wonder what if? After what seemed like forever, we heard a loud bang on our classroom door followed by an attempt to open it. Many of us were startled by this sudden noise that broke the eerie silence. One of my classmates let out a scream that was immediately followed by a wave of shushes from peers and our teacher. Finally, the voice of our principal blared over the intercom and we were informed that the drill was complete. We returned to our seats, turned the lights on, and continued with instruction as if nothing had happened.”

Read the full piece from Brad Blackburn in the South Seattle Emerald.