School Violence Harms More than Students
Remember back in the day when a fight would break out and everyone would rush to see but only the two people fighting would get involved? People wanted to see what was going on, but there was a code of ethics that you didn’t double team a person and you didn’t pick up someone else’s battle if it didn’t have anything to do with you. Kids fought with fights, pulled hair, kicked, scratched and punched but when the teacher or coach or principal came to break up the fight, no one was left dead on the ground and often when it was a fair fight, that was the last you would hear of it except for the trouble with the principal for fighting.
Today, school violence is regarded by many as worse than some of the violence that is happening on the street with adults. The classrooms in many schools are the place where students decide to take matters into their own hands for disciplinary action they feel is unjust and to retaliate against students for any reason from simple dislike to gossip to rival gang members. This is not to suggest that every classroom is a war zone and that no student can safely go to school and get an education. However, it is to suggest that school violence has continued to increase and that many are being harmed by this senseless violence.
Finger pointers are quick to blame television and the increased violence that is portrayed in programming even for small children. Cartoon villains with a vendetta for blood and plans to destroy the world are prime time viewing choices on channels that are supposed to be kid friendly. Although parental guidance should dictate whether or not these programs are appropriate for children of a certain age, this is not always the case. Many believe that the increase in violence in the schools is a direct result of the increase in violence on television.
Television alone cannot be blamed for school violence any more than students can be considered the only ones who are harmed by the violent acts that happen in and around school. The truth of the matter is that students are being harmed by the violence because the majority of it is aimed at them or fellow students they know. But, students are not the only ones being harmed, particularly when the violence results in permanent injury or death.
Parents are being harmed by school violence both directly and indirectly. Those who have children that have been victimized face the decision of whether or not to send their child back to the school where they have been harmed. Parents who have lost children to school violence experience the greatest harm of all because no parent should have to bury a child, especially under such circumstances.