In response to “Don’t ban guns, ban governmental schools” letter | Letter to the editor

Schools are not “impersonal” or “sterile.”

I have spent my working life in several schools, first as a high school teacher and then as a textbook publishing consultant. After reading Michelle Darnell’s Feb. 23 indictment of public schools as “incubators” for school shootings, I am flabbergasted.

It’s her conclusion that’s not only dishonest and simplistic, but also staggeringly wrong. Worse, her letter is filled with assertions and rhetoric and devoid of proof.

Darnell begins by asking: “What have all the school shooters in recent history had in common? They all attended public schools.” She then charges to the specious conclusion that public schools “have become incubators for the sort of tragedies we are seeing today.”

Maybe if the public schools where I taught or worked as a consultant were as she described —“impersonal” and “sterile” with kids “falling through the cracks”—I’d agree with her. But they’re not. Knowing that, it’s hard to read such a dismissive, biased and spurious conclusion.

Darnell goes on to assert: “It is time to consider whether guns are the problem.” No, it’s past time to ask this question because the answer is, “Yes.” Guns are also a problem in homes, movie theaters, shopping malls, rock concerts, and commercial banks. Are these places incubators, too?

Let me offer an analogy: 90 percent of all financial-institution robberies occur at commercial banks. Only 8 percent occur at credit unions, and 2 percent at savings and loans. Applying Darnell’s “logic” argues for us to close commercial banks and only do business at CUs and S&Ls, right?

Darnell intimates that public schools are unable to see “warning signs early on.” Certainly, mental illness is a reality, but a disturbed student is less of a threat when not armed with a gun.

Clearly, Darnell and I have opposite agendas. She wants to dismantle and defund public schools and keep the guns. I want to support the majority of American teachers and students by strengthening our public schools and banning automatic and semi-automatic weapons.

John Scannell,

Kirkland

More in Letters to the Editor

Are pesticides needed? | Letter

Ms. Mayor, We are residents of Holmes Point for several years now… Continue reading

Display of leadership | Letter

The Mueller Report is done. Get ready for fiery arguments on “criminality,”… Continue reading

Homelessness and the right to survive | Letter

Do homeless persons have a constitutional and civil right to occupy and… Continue reading

Affordable prescriptions needed | Letter

Americans pay the highest brand-name drug prices in the world. I ask… Continue reading

A short changed public | Letter

Representing Washington Physicians for Social Responsibility, I was one of dozens of… Continue reading

Earth Day 2019 | Letter

Much like making a New Year’s resolution, Earth Day is a perfect… Continue reading

A bit of relief | Letter

Working families, seniors, and the disabled deserve tax relief. By taxing less… Continue reading

Vote ‘yes’ to support public schools | Letter

Our children graduated in 2001, but we encourage our neighbors and community… Continue reading

Letters on EvergreenHealth measure | Letter

Vote yes on EverHealthy We’re writing to endorse EvergreenHealth’s proposed measure to… Continue reading

Most Read