Despite the never ending COVID-19 crisis, it’s back to school time in many parts of the country. However, one critical element will be missing from many schools, a law enforcement presence. With the “Defund the Police” movement pushing for the removal of police officers from elementary to college level, schools have cancelled police contracts and banned officers from coming onto their campuses. Why? Because these racist and violent officers – the same ones who have been successfully integrated into schools for years and years – are now part of a “systemically racist” society that only fuels the so-called “school-to-prison pipeline”.
So instead of addressing the actual causes of the problems in the school, you remove the law enforcement officers who are there to protect the students, teachers and staff from threats inside and outside the school. It’s not hard to predict what is going to happen. Once again, the lives of America’s children are going to be sacrificed for political gain.
Despite what the media tells us, acts of mass violence at schools is hardly a new, or a United States only, thing. It has and continues to happen at schools of all levels, in all corners of the world, with all forms of weapons. The weapon in fact makes little difference, violence is violence and dead is dead. When one form of weapon isn’t available, another will be used.
What has changed is the way we prevent and respond to it. We’ve learned that hardening schools, having law enforcement on site, having armed teachers and having a zero-tolerance policy dramatically reduce the amount of violence on school grounds.
The most visible, and most newsworthy, incidents are shootings. Nothing grabs media and politician reactions like shooting innocent, unarmed children. Yet what is the preferred method of protecting our nation’s schools? Posting a bunch of Gun Free Zone signs and declaring the campus safe, until the next time.
I, and many many others have pointed out the insanity of ignoring the evidence and relying on Gun Free Zone signs to protect our children. Yet time and time again, the evil, insane and deraigned take note of where the soft targets are and go there to make their name in history. And time and time again, the political response to a mass shooting event is more gun control.
But what about this systemically racist school-to-prison pipeline? Isn’t that worth not having police in schools?
Schools are supposed to be about educating our youth for transition into adulthood. Violence, harassment and drugs brought in by students has no place here. Yet schools continue trying to insulate students who commit on-campus crime from the criminal justice system. They say they can handle it better without getting the authorities involved. Thus, students learn very quickly there are no real consequences for committing crime.
Again, it’s been show time and time again that a permissive approach towards minor crime leads to more crimes and more serious crimes.
Take the example of Parkland High School in Florida who had a policy of not disciplining students or calling in law enforcement for incidents. After all, that makes the school look bad and could impact funding. Was this the cause of the tragedy there? No, not its own. In this case there were so many colossal failures at every level from the schools disciplinary policy and ignoring a safety assessment, security watching the gunman entering the building and doing nothing, to the Sheriff’s department inaction before and during the incident, the state child welfare services and the FBI, ALL of which could have stopped this horrific incident before it ever started.
So here’s a little reality you might find disturbing. What if the school-to-prison pipeline – defined as the disproportionate tendency of minors and young adults from disadvantaged backgrounds to become incarcerated, because of increasingly harsh school and municipal policies – isn’t because of the policies or the police being on site? What if the population getting arrested really is committing the crimes and the policies and police are just catching it?
Of course, the popular answer is the schools and police are racist because these policies are ensnaring a disproportionate number from a certain population. That’s easy to fix. Get rid of the policies and the police. It won’t do anything to fix the actual violence or crime in the schools, but if there’s no official reporting on it, does it actually exist?
What if the real reason is there are deeper societal issues for this population to be getting into trouble in the first place. That would mean going into the communities and working on things like family, parenting, education, opportunity, jobs and crime. Of course, that would be really hard and take a long time to fix when it’s much easier to just declare a system racist and change the policies there.
So as students return to campus this fall with nothing more than a Gun Free Zone sign to protect them from internal and external threats, the gun control extremist politicians are queuing up their next round of gun control measures guaranteed to prevent the violence, this time.
Remember, gun control does absolutely nothing to increase public safety and the answer to fix that shortcoming is always to implement more gun control.
For those who have children in school, it’s way past time to demand your school board keep safety measures in schools, including strict zero tolerance policies and law enforcement in schools.
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