Yesterday, just as first period was getting underway at Chardon High School in Ohio, T.J. Lane opened fire into a crowded cafeteria. Details are still unfolding and we do not know what Lane’s ultimate plan was. We do know however that Junior Daniel Parmertor was killed and four of his classmates were wounded.
The gunman was chased out of the school by a teacher before he could inflict any further harm; he was arrested a short time later.
As we begin to attempt to understand the motivations and circumstances surrounding the shooting, we are brought back to a very familiar discussion…the dangers and consequences of bullying. When these things happen, often we see that the shooters were victims of long-term bullying. That is not to justify these actions in any way… however it can’t be a coincidence that all of these school shooters are victims of some sort of torment.
Rather than write something here which lectures you on the dangers of making fun of someone, or of harassing someone on Twitter or Facebook, I will simply ask you to do a bit of self-reflection. Look at yourself, your actions, and how you treat people. Are you proud of how you treat others? Are you petty, mean, or rude to people with no good reason?
Take an honest look at yourself…