This morning I am filled with anger, dismay, frustration…………so many emotions I am having trouble processing.
I have been reading the timeline of events of the Parkland, Florida shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in February 2018. The timeline and facts were put together after a 10 month study of the horrific event, and exposes some glaring failures that allowed terrible loss of life. The report walks through the event minute by minute from the time the shooter enters the campus grounds – seen but unchallenged – through the search for said shooter. Diagrams of the school, video footage and 911 tapes are shared, all of which emphasize the many ways this event could have been contained much more quickly resulting in fewer, and dare I say it NO deaths. Huge failures on the part of many people throughout the timeline meant that 17 people, both teen and adult, no longer live on this earth, another 17 were injured and countless people will never be the same.
If you have an interest in learning about this event, I am sharing the link. It is full of facts, several I had not taken into consideration, and I study these types of events to stay informed for the classes I teach. One that jumps out at me is that they were making decisions based on video feed that was 20 minutes delayed rather than live feed. They did not realize that until much later. This one thing prevented medical personnel from entering the scene and allowed the shooter to leave the building, the school grounds, and go to the nearby Walmart.
(Caution that the the audio tapes may be distressing, however, you can choose to skip listening to those.)
One of the revelations I had while studying this is that we cannot expect others to ride in on the proverbial white horse and save us. We are responsible for our own safety. Time delays, lack of preparation, errors in protocol, not having a good understanding of what could and should be done, and possibly cowardice on the part of those who were meant to act allowed this event to happen with catastrophic results!
Why would I spend my time reading and researching this? Because I need to know and attempt to understand the evil I am dealing with in this world. I cannot throw the ostrich card on the table and stick my head in the sand, hoping evil passes me by. It simply does not work that way. Rather, I need to educate myself, see where the ‘holes’ in the plan exist and do all in my power to plug those ‘holes’.
Shepherdess, if you have children or grandchildren in the public school system you must help educate them on what to do if this type of evil walks down the hall. Ask your school administration what they have in place to protect your flock. Ask your local law enforcement what their policy is on responding to an event like this. Preparation for disaster is not a new concept. During my lifetime our schools have performed fire drills and tornado drills, hoping and praying the reality would not come to pass. Bomb shelters in the event of a nuclear attack were constructed and in the generation before me, gas masks were purchased by citizens in the event of biological warfare. Why are we not preparing our children for active shooting events? Why is that so difficult to confront? Why not work to take the fear out of it by talking about it, and teaching them what they can do in the event of? Taking it a step further, if you work outside the home, have you given thought to what you would do if the evil visits your workplace? Are you aware that more shootings occur at the workplace than at our schools?
This is a problem that will not go away. It is not a problem that should be left to others to sort out. It is our responsibility to educate ourselves, do what we can to help, and not point fingers when the news report hits the air waves.
There are many scriptures in the Bible that guide us on righteous anger, defending ourselves from evil, and protection. I encourage you to take some ‘me’ time and explore the scriptures.
Shepherdess tend your flock well.