As one parent among the millions of parents who have sent children to public schools — or “government schools” as letter writer Ms. Michelle Darnell is fond of calling them — I want to take exception to her bonkers description of public schools as being “incubators for school shootings.” Fiddlesticks!
Like many other parents, I have first-hand experience with the public schools — as both a teacher and a parent. Furthermore, my three public school children are all college graduates. One is a doctor practicing family medicine here in Seattle. Another has her M.A. in accounting and works at one of the nation’s largest accounting firms in downtown Seattle. The third is a computer science geek employed by a Seattle start-up. All of them would be surprised to hear that they received a clearly inferior education in an environment both “impersonal” and “sterile.”
Ms. Darnell’s dark and outrageous conclusion — that public schools are somehow responsible for school shootings — is a mystery to me, and I’ll venture there are tens of millions of public school graduates and their parents who wonder what schools Ms. Darnell is talking about. Despite my own children’s educational pedigree, none has contemplated becoming a school shooter.
Opting to blame public schools smacks of medieval medicine. That’s when the proposed cure — defunding public education and excusing the role that automatic weapons play in school shooting tragedies — only makes things worse than before.
Despite Ms. Darnell’s unsupported assertion, the illness is not the schools; it is the access to automatic and semi-automatic weapons. Everyone — except the NRA — knows that. We also all know what the cure is.