The Safety of Our Children is Not Up for Debate

On Tuesday, November 14th, a gunman by the name of Kevin Janson Neal went on what authorities called “a deadly rampage,” killing 4 people and injuring 10 others. The gunman fired gunshots in 7 separate locations in Northern California–one of those locations is an elementary school. The Rancho Tehama Elementary School is a school located about 130 miles north of Sacramento, CA. Students from the elementary school were still on the playground in the early morning, waiting for the bell to ring when shots were heard in the distance. Staff quickly gathered the students, took them into classrooms and instructed them to shelter under their desks. Several minutes later, the gunman crashed into the fence at the elementary school and began shooting at classroom windows. As a result, one student was shot in the classroom, and is now in stable condition.

It is believed that the gunman left the school without causing further harm after he attempted to enter classrooms but was unsuccessful as all doors had been locked by teachers and staff. The quick thinking from teachers and staff prevented an armed domestic terrorist from hurting, or killing more of the students under their care and protection.

Gun control is undoubtedly a controversial issue, but the safety of our children is not up for debate. I do not propose a single solution, but I do urge our community to speak up in favor of our children’s safety and well-being. Hundreds of students at the Rancho Tehama Elementary School will now carry with them the scarring memory of a stranger invading their safe learning environment with the sole intention of causing them harm. As parents, we cannot sit idle, restricting our concerns and complaints to the four walls that make up our home. Call your local and state representatives and demand that the issue of gun control and gun safety be resolved. We cannot allow our children to grow up in a culture that has desensitized itself to violence, whether random or intentional acts of violence. Do it for our children; do it for their future.

If you want to add your voice to the list of people asking for laws that make it harder to obtain assault rifles, here’s how to call your representatives about gun control reform.

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Robel Espino

Robel Espino

Robel Espino is an education specialist assistant, worked as an after school instructor, and serves as a youth leader in his local church. A first-generation college graduate, Robel attended California State University, East Bay in Hayward, CA, and received a degree in English Literature. Robel is an Oakland native who received k-12 education in the cities of Oakland, San Pablo, and Richmond, CA. He is a husband, and a father of a four-year old.

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