Picture this: A mother says to teenager leaving for school: “Honey, do you have everything you need for school today – your homework, your lunch money, and oh - don’t forget your gun!”
Gunfire erupted in a crowd of students wearing school uniforms yesterday afternoon at the busy intersection of Esplanade and N. Broad. The NOPD has not yet said if they have a suspect in the shooting of a student.
An NOPD spokesman told WWL-TV that “it all began with an altercation between several students wearing school uniforms, and then gunfire erupted.” However, an eyewitness tells WWL First News that the young male shooter was not wearing a school uniform.
Another altercation and another brazen shooting in public in broad daylight again bring us face-to-face with the depth of a problem we have in New Orleans and throughout America. I just wonder which of President Obama’s newly proposed gun laws would have prevented the shooting yesterday afternoon that left one teen in critical condition with two gunshot wounds.
The sad reality is that this is not a problem that can be solved with legislation. Proposing an immediate tangible solution, like legislation, satisfies our human instinct to protect society, but fails to address the deeper, more complicated problem of requiring parents to raise their children to become contributing members of the community.
Every senseless shooting is alarming, but when a shooting occurs in a group of high school students after school we are reminded about the magnitude of the problem. We were all in high school and we all remember hanging out with friends after school and that’s why it’s difficult to comprehend how much society has changed.
Teens with guns and the wrong attitude about life are generally the product of households that provide little or no guidance to their children. The most unfortunate aspect of this is the reality that it will take generations to manifest significant change.
The teens that are ‘armed with attitudes’ change the world of being a teenager. The ripple effect is easy to understand. If parents are responsible for teaching their children to be safe in life, the list of warnings has grown – look both ways before you cross the street, don’t touch the stove when it’s hot, don’t talk to strangers and don’t get shot!