You may have heard about the hostile shooting event that took place at a Texas high school a few weeks ago. According to the available details, calls came into local law enforcement around 9:15 a.m. on Wednesday, October 6, about an unlawfully armed individual at Timberview High School in Arlington, Texas. Four people were wounded in an altercation with a firearm that likely began with a fight, authorities said. The building was on lockdown with students, staff and teachers inside. It was then cleared a few hours later.
According to the news reports, a pregnant teacher was injured in a fall during the incident and was treated at the scene. Three others were transported to nearby hospitals — two with gunshots wounds. The injured included a 15-year-old boy in critical condition, a 25-year-old man in good condition and a teenage girl in good condition. An 18-year-old male student fled the scene but later turned himself in to authorities. The suspect, who opened fire in a classroom, has since been charged with three counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
It’s tragic whenever a gun is used negligently or maliciously, especially when innocent people are injured or innocent lives are lost. And during these tragic times, a lot of people want to put the blame on the firearms community. They try to perpetuate an incorrect stereotype that gun owners and 2A organizations are callous, cold or uncaring. But nothing could be further from the truth. Gun owners and 2A organizations care very much. And while I am a firearms writer and instructor, and I work for the USCCA, I am first and foremost a mom. And very few things are as jarring, as heartbreaking or as frightening as the knowledge that children may be in danger.
Regarding the incident at Timberview High School, I was relieved to hear that it was not an act of random violence. In this case, some deranged individual did not choose to target school children in a murderous rage. But I was dismayed to hear that the misuse of a firearm was the result of a fight. In details that came out a few days after the incident, several reports shared the suspect was repeatedly bullied and robbed at school.
A family spokesperson for the suspect addressed reporters outside the 18-year-old boy’s home. The spokesperson stated that the fight had stemmed from an ongoing dispute between the suspect and some other students. But an 18-year-old should not have been in possession of a gun. And he certainly should not have brought it to school. The options before the last defense options of a gun should have been made available. The spokesperson commented, “The decision he made, taking the gun, we’re not justifying that. That was not right. But he was trying to protect himself.”
Last Defense Reality
No doubt, we all want to understand what happened. As a mom of three kids (and as someone who was often bullied in school), I feel for anyone who is physically and/or emotionally tormented by others. But a firearm is never an answer to an argument. It’s imperative that all gun owners and gun users understand that a firearm is an option for self-defense. It is an equalizer that may provide protection during a dynamic critical incident in which death or great bodily harm is imminent and inescapable. A gun is not a quick solution to a bothersome issue. It’s the last resort when nothing else will suffice.