School shooting causes may never be known

On February 14 of this year, yet another school shooting has struck the U.S. into another pit of shock and grief. 17 lives were taken by a former student by the name of Nikolas Cruz, leading many people wondering what went wrong and why no one noticed.

School shootings have been a sour and sensitive subject around the world for rather obvious reasons. Whether it’s talking about Columbine, UT or Sandy Hook, it all comes down to a question of why these things happen. No one may ever know what drives people to enact such horrendous crimes. Keeping well informed is one way to spread the awareness and to find solutions to prevent and protect ourselves in these situations.

The most important thing to remember when in an active shooter situation is to stay calm, quiet, and self-preserved. Never open a door when someone is knocking or begging to come in and never assume that you are safe. Always take cover and do your best to hide. The basic safety measure that you learn about at work or in school are all that we have as a means to preserve ourselves in these situations.

One of the earliest school shootings took place in Austin, Texas on August 1, 1966. A former US Marine named Charles Joseph Whitman killed 16 people and injured at least 30 students at the University of Texas before he was taken out by police.

Go forward another 30 years and there is the Columbine shooting in Littleton, Colorado on April 20, 1999 where teenagers Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold killed 12 fellow students and one teacher before committing suicide in the school library.

Again only eight years later we have the Virginia Tech Shooting on April 16, 2007 where 32 lives were taken by a 23-year-old student named Seung-Hui Cho who later committed suicide.

Only five years later and we have the horrendous Sandy Hook shooting in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012. Adam Lanza, age 20, shot and killed 20 children of ages only six through seven along with six adults, school staff and faculty, before turning the gun on himself.

What drives these people is unknown. Many blame it on mental illness while others on childhood trauma. When it all boils down it’s just people. There is never a time to joke about these situations. No one knows why these people feel the need to take others out with them or why they pick up a gun and go with the intent to murder another human being. We can’t keep placing the blame and we need to stay informed, aware, and ready. Above all else, we need to stay safe.