Attacks Related to Primary Schools in the US

The history that Americans have with firearms is deep. Some take pride while others fear the deadly weapon. Forty percent of Americans have either used a gun or live in a household with a gun(s). According to the Pew Research Center research report, 2017, at least two-thirds of American adults grew in a home with a firearm while 7%, inclusive of 55% who have not owned a gun personally, I have ever fired a gun at some point.

Gun use is complex in America such that it has led to widespread killings. We look at the attacks by guns dating back as far as 1856 which has involved primary schools in the US.

  • August 6, 1856

In Florence Alabama, a headmaster killed a student by strangulation. The reason was that the boy had killed the head teacher’s pet, Sparrow. The slain boy’s father went to school and shot dead the headmaster.

  • 6th February 1864

In Ashland County, Ohio, at Pyfer’s School House, George Longfelt the school teacher shot Alfred Desem, a student and fled.

  • April 12, 1887

In Watertown, New York, a student at Potsdam Normal School shot himself in the head when committing suicide.

  • 1891, April 9

70-year-old James Foster fired a shotgun at a group of students in the playground of St Mary’s Parochial School, Newburgh New York. Several students sustained minor injuries.

  • February 12, 1909

San Francisco, California; Dorothy Malakanoff, was shot and killed by 49-year-old Demetri Tereaschiko, as she arrived at her school.

  • February 15, 1934

Downey, California; Dr. Blythe shot and killed his wife Eleanor, as well as his son, 8-year-old Robert, at Gallatin grammar school before committing suicide.

  • 23rd February 1943

Port Chester, New York; Harry Wyman 13-year-old shot himself dead at Harvey’s boy’s preparatory school.

  • November 27, 1951

New York City; David Brooks, 15-year-old, was fatally shot as fellow pupils looked on.

  • September 26, 1988

Greenwood, South Carolina; in Oakland Elementary School’s cafeteria, 19-year-old James William Jr., shot to death Shequilla Bradley and wounded eight other children with a gun. He was attacked by Kat Finkbeiner, a P.E teacher while reloading the pistol in the girls’ restroom. James shot Kat in hand and mouth. He finally entered the 3rd-grade classroom and wounded six more pupils.

  • January 17, 1989

In Cleveland School Massacre, five school children were killed while 29 were injured by a single gunman firing over 100 bullets into the schoolyard using an AK-47.

  • May 3, 1999

One Mr. Steven Allen Abrams purposefully drove to the playground of South Coast Early Childhood Learning Center. He killed two children, injuring four other children and an adult. Allen later stated that he thought the deaths of the children would silence the voices that he thought the US government was beaming into his brain.

  • September 5, 2000

Bidwell, Ohio; Frank Shoemaker shot dead, 52-year-old Linda Shoemaker, his estranged wife. Frank killed her in the parking lot of Bidwell Porter Elementary School where she was a cook. He then returned home and committed suicide.

  • October 2, 2006

Lancaster County, Pennsylvania; Charles Carl Roberts, a milk-tank truck driver, took ten girls hostages from Amish School and eventually shot them. He killed five (aged 7-13), before killing himself.

  • October 8, 2010

Carlsbad, California; 41-year-old Brendan Liam O’Rourke, holding jack-o-lantern, stormed the campus at Kelly Elementary School, he shot and grazed the shoulders of two students, one 6-year-old and the other 7-year-old.

The list was not exhausted since we have covered only the notable incidents that either ended in deaths or several victims wounded. By joining hands, let’s say no to violence with guns. This is possible if we all support the controlled use of firearms!

Guns cause the violence

gun control

Owning a gun in America has become a primary need, with people going as far as collecting guns like antiques. This trend can be attributed to two things, the level of crimes in the communities mainly African American’s, and a status of being “cool”. It’s astounding to know that America has the highest number of guns per capita than any other country in the world. The other disturbing fact is that young adults in their twenties are the most affected victims of gun violence. Any country banks on their youth for continuity, innovation and heirs of the current generation.

With this trend of young people dying violently and the continued exposure which incubates violence, there is an urgent need to intervene. The lobbyists who are powerful and well-funded have been successfully lobbying against gun control laws. It’s absurd, selfish and insensitive for anyone sane not to see what the guns have been doing and continuing to do in our societies.

They argue that people kill not guns. At some point it’s true, but the in some states buying a gun is easy as buying milk in a retail shop. Strict background checks should be a must to anyone aspiring purchase a gun. Strict gun control has shown a significant decrease in homicides in many countries with data to support. Most of the argument is that when one has a gun, they are less likely to be victims or robbery or any other crime. Well, this has not been supported by any research data, but the prevalence of gun-related crimes with a huge percentage is enough evidence to call for a revision of the current laws about gun ownership. There are 2 opposite views on private gun ownership should be restricted. But we think that guns should be banned. The government should focus on equipping the police force adequately to protect the citizens and prohibit personal gun ownership unless it’s a special case or necessity.

Everyone’s Under Gunpoint. Location, Age, and Gender Don’t Matter

As much as there have been shootings around the world with a focus on two places Canada and United States, everyone is under gunpoint. The killings cannot be classified as always planned; the killer has in a single day not decided to use a factor to kill. He or she is hell-bent on satisfying the need to kill without reason or a single person could have hurt strong motive, him or her, but the pain will be reflected in their sole choosing. Following the events of less than a decade, everyone irrespective of age, gender or location is under gunpoint. Why am I saying this?

Florida School Shooting-17 dead, over 24 people injured, US

At the beginning of this year, February to be precise there was a school shooting in the State of Florida, US. It is termed one of the deadliest in the history of America. The killer, Nikolas Cruz, 17 years of age on a given on day walked into a former school, Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School and killed seventeen people hurting another two dozen. Was there motive, nobody can tell, simple expulsion from school, the next thing you know innocent people are dying.

Kindergarten shooting-20 first-graders dead, 6 members of staff dead, US

A case similar was that of Sandy Hook Elementary in 2012 whereby a 20-year-old, Adam Lanza killed 26 before committing suicide. Surprisingly, this is a perpetrator of 20 years old in a school of first graders, no connection at all. With a bullet vest to an elementary school, I cannot think of a reason; he shot dead 20 first-graders and six members of staff before shooting himself. Besides, committing such an act, he kills the mother. Who knows, still I cannot see any connection.

Church killings-26 random Christians dead, US

In 2017, November, Sutherland Springs, Texas, a gunman walks into the First Baptist Church killing about 26. On this day, members of various families are lost just through a simple walk in. Who could have seen this coming? I cannot tell, but all clear is that these were all random people praising their Lord. This shooting tops the list as one of the deadliest mass shootings in the history of Texas and the US in the last less than half a decade.

In Canada, it is not different, the latest of them all being the Faisal Hussein shooting. Faisal walks into a busy street in Toronto, and at random shoots and kills two, injuring 13. In this case, the gunman does not slip away from the police; he is tracked to an alley and later found dead hundred meters away.

Police killings- 3 dead, 2 injured, Canada

Four years ago, 2014, a 24-year-old gun down five police officers of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police in Moncton, Canada. All this is done on the street without motive. The suspect ends up killing three of the police officers leaving two of the police officers injured.

Homicide- Man killed for raising not their own, Canada

Still in 2014 in Edmonton Alberta, a 53-year-old walks into a homestead and kills seven. He then moves to another house and kills one with a reason that the victim was raising a child, not of their own. Later the suspect named, Phu Lam commits suicide.

 Walk-in Mosque Killings- 6 dead, 18 injured, Canada

In Quebec City, 2017 January a gunman walks into a mosque and kills 6 leaving 18 maimed. All without any connection could be psychological or crime of passion. No one can tell why an individual can walk into a place of worship and commit such heinous acts.

Cumulatively, the above shows that for some reason certain individuals in possession of arms acquired legally and illegally have ended up killing innocent persons. They did not base their killings on any ideologies, just random murder, no location, and no age and gender considerations. Everyone is under gunpoint.