This is a powerful article about how schools are responding to the culture of gun violence. Why is this happening? Could it be because we have a Congress and a President whose loyalty has been purchased by the National Rifle Association? Our leaders refuse to enact meaningful control of guns. They send their thoughts and prayers. I’m counting on the younger generation to vote them out of office.

<a href=”“>This is school in America now.</a>

James Poniewozik, The Chief television critic of the New York Times, wrote it.

“The heartbreaking thing about the images — one heartbreaking thing among many — is the precision. The cooperation. The orderliness.

“Time after time, a report comes of another everyday nightmare at an American school, and with it, a harrowing ritual. We see the children — those who survived — filmed from news helicopters, leaving the building in neat lines. They’re 16 years old, or 11, or six. Their hands are in the air, or on one another’s shoulders. Heads down, or eyes looking around anxiously.

“It’s an image of relief and horror. They’re in transit, away from the killing zone but not entirely safe yet either.

“They came to school in cars or on buses. They walk away from it the way we’re used to seeing prisoners walk. Arms up. Fingers spread apart. Show us that you are safe, you are unarmed, you are not a threat.

“The news anchors narrating say that the children are leaving school, but make no mistake: What you are watching, this frightened, exhausted procession, is school now. It is what your children are taught. Lockdown drills, active shooter drills. It’s a procedure they have learned, and what you are seeing is a kind of horrible field trip, a deadly exam.

“You send your kids to school, and one of the things they learn is how not to die.

“It’s devastating how well they’ve absorbed the lesson. Every time I see another American class walk out, the lucky ones, I’m struck by the calm, the cooperation. In the worst imaginable moment, the hands go up, and they put faith in what adults have promised them: Just follow the rules, and you’ll be all right.

“The schools are in Texas, Florida, Connecticut, Washington, California — in different sizes and kinds of communities. But everywhere, in those aerial shots, you see the signs and symbols of a society’s investment in children’s future. The green athletic fields. The school buses lined up like yellow bricks. The expansive parking lots. The multicolored backpacks, with their books and papers emptied on the ground to prove that they are not weapons.

“I want to say that these images are powerful. “Powerful” isn’t really the right word, though, is it? They’re affecting. They’re wrenching. They’re painful. But “powerful” — that suggests that they achieve something, that they have an effect on the larger world, and honestly, do they?

“They feel as if they should. So many times we see these pictures, and even knowing that we’ve seen them before, it feels as if, this time, it should be different. The children were so young, or the death toll so high, or the repetition, simply, so great — it hurts so much, this time, that we’ll snap out of our inertia and our defensive stances and take some action.

“And there are actions, sometimes. The February shooting in Parkland, Fla., started a movement based not on the strength of adults’ actions, but on the mobilization of students who realized that they could only count on themselves.

“Still, change comes slow. Time drags on. People forget. Kids are smart — they’ve learned this lesson, too. After the mass shooting Friday in Santa Fe, Tex., a student told CBS News that the killings didn’t surprise her at all. “It’s been happening everywhere,” she said. “I’ve always kind of felt eventually it was going to happen here, too.”

“So the ritual goes on. Another group of children — our children — flees a school. They throw their hands up. Eventually, so do we.”

Sent from my iPad