I Was Too Afraid To Send My Son To School Today. #GunControlNow

An armed man walked into Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, pulled the fire alarm, and when the children emerged from their classrooms he opened fire with an AR-15 assault rifle, killing seventeen and wounding fourteen others. That school shooting solidified the eighteenth American school shooting in 2018. That's an average of three school shootings a week in America.

It's clear, American schools are not safe. None of them. Not public, private, elementary, middle or high school, or college for that matter.  The statistics on school shootings over the past 20-years are staggering. The number of innocent children murdered at the hands of evil in their classrooms is almost impossible to accept. The inaction of the American government to stop these heinous acts is criminal in its own right.

After being up all night flipping between hysterical sobs over the loss of so many innocent children and anger over the inaction of American lawmakers, the thought of sending my son to his public elementary school terrified me, so I kept him home today. That decision brought me the first moment of comfort I'd felt in hours.

When I held my son this morning, I felt an overwhelming sense of gratitude and guilt. I'm so thankful my son is alive in my arms. I'm beyond grateful he survived his day at school yesterday because seventeen innocent children did not. The thought of how many children might possibly die today is polarizing.

I was born a few miles from Parkland, Florida and currently an hour away from Marshall County High. These shootings are closing in on me, and I wager to say, every other American.

The USA is averaging three school shootings a week. That's one every sixty hours. HOW CAN THIS BE HAPPENING???

School shootings are the new normal. Mass murders in American schools have become a regular occurrence. As have the political excuses and agendas. I will never understand why assault rifles and any other weapon that can cause mass murder in under thirty seconds are legal to own in America. Tighten gun laws. Hold parents accountable. Not, remove the gun licensing fee, "to make it easier for citizens of Indiana to obtain a firearm." Come on, Indiana, Really? 

I live in the land of dreams and hope! How can American schools be so unsafe? I just cannot get my head around that. I'm going to take a few days to calm down and consider my options. Since I work from home, Homeschooling is certainly an option. My son is in Kindergarten, how hard can it be? Surely not nearly as hard as it is for me to send him to school.

If I choose not to send my son to school, in the end, it's my choice. A freind tried to call me crazy for even considering it. She made comments like, "Are you not going to let him out in public anymore too? You know he has a higher likelihood of being molested at a recreational sport, or at a friends house, will you keep him from that too?"

My response: Fuck. off. I will never be sorry for making a decision to keep my son safe. I can go with him to recreational events, but I can't go with him to school. Also, recreational events and public settings are not dealing with 18 shootings in less than six weeks, American schools are.

The bottom line is that I promised my son the day he was born I would love him and protect him, and dammit that's what I intend to do. The warning signs are everywhere. If the government won't do anything to protect my child from this senseless violence, then I will.

April is an award-winning writer and blogger. Her work has been published in over ten countries and four languages. From books to newspapers, to print/online magazines and everything in between, you can find her work. For more on April, Visit AprilMcCormick.com