The Magnet Tribune

People speak out on gun control and violence

Supporters hold up signs during the March for our Lives protest on March 26, in Laredo.

The Magnet Tribune: Kayla Gonzalez

Supporters hold up signs during the March for our Lives protest on March 26, in Laredo.

Audrey Castillo, Staff Writer

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School is a haven for many, but whether it is safe is up for discussion.

 “The uncertainty that students feel over their safety affects them emotionally and academically, with all of the mass shootings that have been occurring lately, it’s terrifying to know that students are risking their lives by being at school and nothing has been done to ensure our safety,” Daniel Gamboa, a United South High School senior, said.

On a survey conducted by this reporter via Google surveys regarding how people feel about the shootings and what could be done in order to minimize the incidents, 39 of 47 respondents were 15 to 20 years old, not exactly coincidental since this is the most targeted audience in school shootings.

“Guns are not sentient. The people shooting the guns are the issue because of how easy it is to obtain access to them, but a good way to prevent these issues is by regulating the weapons used to commit these crimes I believe that gun regulation will ensure that only responsible individuals have access to firearms and those who are not suitable do not,” Ashley Vazquez, Early College High School senior, said.

…  it is immoral to not think of the lives of students and families that are being affected.”

— VMT freshman Xochitl Gonzalez

Many acknowledge that the issue is not simply the guns but also the mental well-being of those who want to obtain these weapons.

“In America, we are given the right to bear arms. I believe finding a way to restrict gun control and keep our human rights is possible. I believe we should be required to have physical and mental tests so that we can reduce the misuse of this weapon. Mental training is also crucial because people who want to obtain this weapon should know what to do in certain situations where using a weapon is necessary,” Pablo Hernandez, VMT television and radio senior, said.

According to the responses gathered from the Google surveys, the uncertainty of safety in schools has started to project fear into students’ lives.

In response to reoccurring mass shootings some say that security measures should be put in place such as arming trained teachers with weapons, but it is this proposition that seems counterproductive to some.

Change is within reach, it must simply be pushed for… ”

— Jazmine Trevino, VMT senior theatre student

“I understand we need tighter security measures to end these incidents but guns are dangerous. If you start giving teachers who don’t know the weapon like they should, then you’re asking for problems. There are other ways to insure our students’ safety. Resorting to weapon use should be the last thing that we do,” Roy Mendez retired Army veteran and AP U.S. History instructor at Cigarroa High School, said.

VMT teachers also thought staff members should not be armed.

“I’ve thought about it. Teenagers are not the only problem; we also have teachers who explode. We’re supposed to set examples for the students. If teachers have a gun, what’s to stop the students from thinking that they can have one?” asked Jamine Teran, Television-radio instructor.

“Arming the teachers is already too big of a responsibility. It’s too much liability. Teachers are overworked and overstressed. It’s a recipe for disaster, one that could be avoided,” Mary Ellen Kirkpatrick Leyendecker, dance instructor, added.

There are many ways in which people can speak out and fight for gun control regulations such as writing to elected officials or joining some of the protests that have been conducted in order to spread awareness.

“Change is within reach, it must simply be pushed for,” Jazmine Trevino, VMT senior theatre student, said. “If people want school environments to be safer then we must come together and fight for our safety.”

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