As future educators, we have a lot of jobs. Apart from being teachers, we are caretakers, listening ears, motivators, and lifelong friends. A teacher's job does not end at the bell, and to be a truly impactful educator, you must always have your student's best interest at heart. For these reasons, the current proposal of arming teachers alarms me and, in my opinion, goes against everything it means to be a teacher.
As I said before, educators wear a lot of hats. Although I'm in my first year at university, through my volunteer work at a local high school and the various experiences I receive through my teaching scholarship, I have seen education and teaching from a new perspective this year.
One thing that has been made abundantly clear through this work is that teaching not only works with the minds of students but also with their hearts. While it may sound corny, it's true. As teachers, we are not only filling our student's minds with knowledge, we are building their self-esteem, striving to connect with them deeply and genuinely, and we sincerely care about their lives and success inside and outside the classroom.
Yes, we have many jobs, but we can do all of them without a gun in our desk drawer.
I understand that a lot of the people who support this new legislation surrounding gun control and school shootings are fearful. I think I can speak for a large portion of the population when I say that safety in school is being jeopardized more and more every day, and that's a really scary thing.
Especially since the shooting in Florida, I think we have all realized that there is something that needs to change. While there are many changes that can be made, giving teachers guns isn't the right solution. I believe we can reflect on and change gun laws in America. I believe we can stray away from violence and learn to solve problems in other ways. I believe that we can agree there needs to be a change, even if we can't agree on what that change is.
More than anything, aside from the fact that guns are dangerous weapons that don't have a place in the classroom, we are perpetuating a system of violence, and teaching the youth of our country that it is okay to solve problems using violence. Rather than fixing the system in a time of distress, we are reverting back to guns and violence.
The students can hear us loud and clear, and the message is already being sent: we value the preservation of guns and violence more than we value your lives and will go to extreme measures to ensure that nothing changes.
We will arm teachers. We will ignore the problem. We will fight to preserve gun laws in America, no matter what we lose. Even if it means we lose safety and trust in the classroom. Even if it means we sacrifice having the trust of our students. Even if it means students lose their lives to gun violence.
As a future educator, I hope that soon, someone in power will consider the students, and the teachers, and the classrooms. Classrooms are meant to be safe places, where fear is nonexistent and learning is limitless.
Do not arm me with a gun. Arm me with more funds to enrich my student's learning. Arm me with books that can transport my kids to different worlds. Arm me with supplies. Arm me with lesson plan ideas or new ways of thinking on the topics we discuss.
But please, keep your guns. They have no place here.