My Turn: School 'lockdown' drills a call to action for Juneau parents

This past week, my 9-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son experienced a “lockdown” drill. When the kids heard the announcement “Code Red,” everyone ran to a pre-determined hiding place. According to my daughter, everyone needs to practice hiding behind coats and being quiet in case there’s a person with a gun in the school looking for them.

Is this disturbing to anyone else out there? When I was a kid, we had fire drills and an occasionally earthquake drill, but we didn’t have to practice hiding out from armed and dangerous roaming gunmen.

And then, two days after lockdown at the neighborhood school, I read the headline that an Alaskan legislator is proposing a bill that would allow teachers to arm themselves at school.

Responding to increasing violence by arming teachers — what’s next? Permits for children to carry weapons? What is going on?!

While I support people’s rights to have guns for hunting, our society has devolved to a low point if we are advocating for teachers to arm themselves.

On the same day as the shooting in Connecticut, there was a similar attack at a school in China. A man wielding an ax attacked students and teachers at a local school. More than 20 students were injured before the man was overtaken by teachers using brooms to defend themselves.

No one died that day at that school in China. The only difference between the two attacks? There was no gun involved. China has strict gun control laws.

The U.S. may be no more or less violent than other nations but we are providing wider access to lethal weapons on a much greater scale.

The message from the NRA is that more guns is the solution (arm teachers!). But the U.S. already has more guns per capita than any other country in the world; and a much higher murder rate to show for it. More guns has not been the answer.

I call on all mothers and fathers — take action! More guns will not create a more peaceful future for our children. Americans need to take a serious approach to controlling guns, for our children’s sake.

• Champney is a 20-year resident of Juneau. She and her husband have three children — two attend Harborview and one attends Dzantik’i Heeni.

More

Thu, 01/19/2017 - 09:41

Letter: A pro-life presidency is something to be thankful for

​On Jan. 20, we will see the inauguration of a new president. From the pro-life perspective, this is something to be thankful for. That day represents the departure from the White House of one of the most pro-abortion presidents we have seen to date. His replacement is a man who has voiced support for a number of pro-life, pro-family initiatives that will protect the rights of the unborn and their mothers. Read more

Thu, 01/19/2017 - 09:22

My Turn: Alaska’s national parks need infrastructure support

In 2016, the National Park Service celebrated its centennial anniversary. 2017 marks the 100th anniversary of Denali National Park, one of the many crown jewels in Alaska’s collection of our national parks. These parks represent the very best and most treasured public lands in our country. As we hear about badly needed infrastructure improvements to our roads, bridges and utilities nationwide, it’s important to remember that our national parks are not immune to these challenges. Denali National Park alone faces an infrastructure repair backlog to roads and facilities of $53 million.

Read more
Thu, 01/19/2017 - 09:22

My Turn: Reflecting on why I love Alaska

Gov. Bill Walker issued a proclamation designating 2017 as a “Year of History and Heritage” in recognition of Alaska’s sesquicentennial — the 150th year since Russia ceded its possessions and interests in Alaska to the United States. Gov. Walker’s proclamation encourages all Alaskans “to study, teach, reflect upon our past, and apply its lessons to a brighter, more inclusive future.”

Read more
Thu, 01/19/2017 - 08:47

Outside Editorial: NATO and the EU: Mend them, don’t end them

The following editorial first appeared in the Chicago Tribune:

In lamenting President Barack Obama's foreign and military policies, Republicans have frequently offered a concise summary: "Our allies don't trust us, and our enemies don't fear us." They didn't imagine the day would come when the same might be said of a Republican president. But that's the prospect Donald Trump raises. Read more

CONTACT US

  • Switchboard: 907-586-3740
  • Circulation and Delivery: 907-586-3740
  • Newsroom Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Business Fax: 907-586-9097
  • Accounts Receivable: 907-523-2230
  • View the Staff Directory
  • or Send feedback

ADVERTISING

SUBSCRIBER SERVICES

SOCIAL NETWORKING