Columns, Opinion

Campus Cognition: BU is failing to acknowledge the school shooting trend

This school year has brought yet another high profile student-led shooting. Last week, five students were shot at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, California by a despicable adolescent killer. 

Despite this and many other highly publicized incidents occurring on high school campuses, the public resonance appears residual. But these tragedies are more than moments in history — they are clear warning signs that unfortunately provide opportunities to condone gun-violence.

Many universities are working hard to make this notion actionable. It pains me that Boston University is not one of them.

We are not doing enough to shed light on one of the darkest and most frightening issues plaguing the country today. Though we are not alone in this lapse, it does not excuse our stark lack of awareness in how to respond.

The most effective reaction to these events requires an equal effort from students and administration. In BU’s case, both sides have repeatedly proven their lapses in consciousness in the wake of this and nearly every other shooting that has occurred recently. 

From the politically-oriented groups down to the individual student, there has been a distinct silence in even passively mentioning what has occurred. I have yet to hear a single person bring up this event in class, on social media or even in conversation. 

We as a student body not only have a responsibility to acknowledge when these tragedies occur, but we also have the largest incentive to do so. We are the ones at risk and are the target of these attacks.

The spotlight that BU gives us, one of such immense public weight given BU’s size and location, should not be squandered with disregard of the issues that hurt our country the most. We need to be loud and incite change for our own sakes. But our failures are only one side of an equally inept coin on campus. 

Our administration has also failed to give this event the attention it deserves. The people meant to keep the student body feeling secure should be reassuring us of our safety. 

The recent near-silence from the most far-reaching voice at this school perpetuates a sentiment that all schools share when a shooting happens on their campus: “We never thought it would happen to us.” 

Instead of simply hoping that a statistically improbable event will never come about, why not hedge against its real, existing likeliness? This works in favor of not only our campus, but of all other universities by way of setting a positive example. 

I do not have the answers as to how our administration could go about doing this, nor do I have the answers on how we as a student body could increase our awareness and build a substantial resistance. 

But what I do know is this: if both of these groups can work towards improving their sense of alertness to what is a serious problem in our country today, BU will become among the most conscious institutions in the nation.

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