Approximately ten days ago Nikolas Cruz opened fire on children at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Seventeen children were killed because of this tragic event and others wounded.   Since the incident, many groups have pushed to have our country focus on the laws that govern gun purchasing. The types of guns one can buy or the legal age to purchase a weapon.   The National Rifle Association, the largest gun lobby in the world has become the brunt of all attacks involving the sale of guns.   Which, on its face is somewhat ludicrous since the purchase happened legally at the time, as did the purchase of the ammunition used.

Do our gun laws need a change? Yes they do. Unfortunately our rights, which are based on The Constitution of The United States probably, need a visit due to the threats and changes in the world today.   We are not saying that we agree with banning weapons or stopping the ability for hardworking and sane sensible Americans to own weapons. Those are our rights as Americans and they have been around for a very long time.   But maybe a tweak needs to be done here or there?   The law was set into the Constitution so long ago, when semi-automatic assault rifles did not exist. Maybe it is just an age concept that needs to change? Most definitely there needs to be a more thorough background and possibly a psychological profile before allowing someone to own such a weapon.   We all agree, something needs to change here.

What is not being discussed though, is in our opinion the most important piece of the discussion here. The children that were killed and injured could have been saved. First, the local police and FBI were warned multiple times about Nikolas Cruz. They did nothing to stop such behavior. Second, multiple Broward County Sheriff’s Office Deputies were on the scene as the shooting was occurring. One who was there when it started and has subsequently resigned from the force. Why didn’t he enter the building and protect the children who were there as sitting ducks? Wasn’t that his job? Isn’t that why he was stationed there and entrusted to carry a fire-arm?

We do need to raise awareness. Do we need to change some legality in the purchase or usage of such weapons, possibly?   But what we need to do immediately is put an opposing force in each and every school in our country. From elementary schools to high schools. If there were two armed individuals assigned to be inside the school at all times and armed, this situation would have been over when it first started. We cannot guarantee that no one would have gotten hurt or killed, but most definitely we could have saved a lot of people.   Further, if the right steps were taken where a metal detector existed at the only entrance one can get into during the day with an armed individual at that location, maybe it would have all been over before a child or teacher was wounded or killed. We must do more than just teaching our children how to hide in a classroom.

If we cannot utilize local law enforcement in each school then empower the federal government to take up the charge and create a division of the Department of Homeland Security. Take retired veterans who have been well trained and allow them to be on premises, armed and in uniform.   This will cut down the response time to one of these incidents, as there would literally be none. It would also act as a deterrent.   Ask yourself why train stations and other public venues where police and military are present don’t have these issues.   It is quite simple really.   People looking to hurt others know just by looking that an opposing force will deal them with, as law enforcement officers are visible.   Maybe if there was some visible protection in one of these schools these assailants would have thought twice before opening fire and killing innocent children and unarmed teachers.

Show the world of would be gun-touting killers that we mean business. That we will protect our children at any cost and takes any measure possible to make our children feel safe in our schools. We must bulletproof classroom doors and install medal detectors in all buildings.   Only one entrance and exit can be utilized for visitors to come in and out.   They must pass an armed individual. There is no other choice ladies and gentlemen.   None.   Outlawing guns will not happen, at least in our lifetime.   Stopping people from using this weapon or that weapon will only result in them using another one. The only solution is to have an opposing force inside each building.   Allow armed security in each school.   Do not put it out for contract bid or allow school districts to hire whomever they want. Make it local or state mandated. Make it federal.   Change the control and the way people look at things by directing them to stand up and focus on the only solution that makes sense while we try to develop gun laws and background checks that do not allow a psychotic kid to buy a semi-automatic rifle.

But most importantly, lets send a message to the very lives we are trying to protect.   That we will not allow them to be in an environment where there is no security.   Make the Parkland, Florida shooting the last time anyone will be able to kill innocent people in a school.   As a parent, I do not have any answer for my children when they ask about a possible situation in their school.   No longer can anyone say, “That can’t happen here”.  Guess what, it can happen anywhere, as it already has.  There is no comfort we can give as parents if there is no definitive solution.

But do not take my words for it, read the words written by my daughter and her freshman class to the survivors of the Parkland Shooting.   Only together can we all make a difference for change that makes sense in the world. Change that protects all of our children…..



Dear friends at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, 

As I sit here in class surrounded by my classmates and teachers I have trouble finding the words. I truly don’t know what I could possibly say that can make the pain and trauma you are feeling any easier. I cannot fathom what you are going through right now and I am sorry if you feel like people can’t relate to the senseless actions that took place on February 14th that put your lives in jeopardy and took many of those important to you. It would be a lot easier writing this letter if I could relate, maybe then I wouldn’t feel so much guilt and maybe I would know what I could do to make any of this better but unfortunately I don’t. I know this is a common feeling for so many around the world at this time… I sat here asking myself why my thoughts would matter to you if I couldn’t fully understand what you are going through, and I don’t know how that can make you feel better.

Though I decided to write this letter to tell you that you aren’t alone and to remind you that your bravery has not gone unnoticed. Above all I sit here writing you this letter because I hope you will be able to see there is still good in this world. I wish there was a way to rewind time, I wish so badly that there was an easy answer, and I wish so badly that there was something I could do to make your life any easier at this very moment. I know it’s crazy to be getting this letter from a complete stranger, I would be lying if I said it wasn’t a little bit crazy to be sitting here writing this. I don’t personally know you and I can’t relate to how you are feeling, though this has truly put everything in perspective for me. I will not sit here and tell you that tomorrow is going to be a brighter day or that everything is just going to get better because I would be lying. I can’t tell you that I know what you are going through or that I have been there but I can tell you that I am here for you and so are so many others. I hope you can see that there is still kindness and love in the world but I don’t know how you can be expected to see that after what you just went through. I can’t wrap my brain around why people are so cruel and why this is what our world has become but I hope I can bring a little light into your life and put a smile on your face in such a hard time. I hope you know you are amazing, I beg you to never give up because you can truly do anything you set your mind to. I find myself feeling numb and helpless…as a freshman in high school I can’t help but wonder when these were things kids had to be worrying about. Although I can’t relate to the way you are feeling at this very moment I can relate to feeling numb, empty and lost. Like you can’t keep fighting anymore but you have proven to the world that you are stronger than anything life throws your way, never forget that. And for whatever it’s worth I care about you. Though I may be a complete stranger and I completely understand that you probably don’t know whom to trust, if you need anyone to talk to don’t hesitate to write me back!!

Wishing you all the best in everything,

Skylar Ribotsky 




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