Earlier this week, a 13-year-old girl was arrested for allegedly planning a school shooting against Tonkawa High School in Tonkawa, Oklahoma. I wasn’t really even going to post about this story because it’s unclear how close the suspect was to carrying out the attack. While reports say that she did have a hit list and her family did own guns it’s not exactly clear if she had unrestricted access to these guns or not. Not to mention the fact that females rarely ever carry out a school shooting. I’m not being sexist, those are just the statistics.
Having said that I did feel the need to post this story because the headline I was greeted with by KFOR was “You don’t think something like that’s going to happen.” That was a quote from another student at the school. As I have said many times in the past small towns like Tonkawa are exactly the places where school shootings can happen. Some of us can name the schools where the more violent shootings took place, but can you name the municipalities? I mean places like Nickel Mines, PA, Littleton, CO, Newtown, CT, Red Lake, MN, DeKalb, IL, and so on.
That’s not to say that every town in small town America is due for a school shooting, but we can’t have this attitude that any place is immune to such violence. If we continue to have that attitude we’ll continue to ignore the signs of imminent violence.
As an addendum to the story, it turns out that the suspect didn’t even attend Tonkawa High School, but was home-schooled instead. No offense to home-schoolers, but after running a child abuse blog for a few years my ears perk up when I hear about a home-schooled kid being arrested. In my experience they were either coddled and had their entitled attitudes reinforced by their parents or they were abused at home. I’m not saying for sure that happened here, but as I said, that has been my experience.