Editorial roundup: Views from around Georgia

Brunswick News: Recent incidents at Georgia schools raise serious questions

Where are the parents when a student gets caught with a gun or other potentially deadly weapon on school campus and where are school administrators when a teacher turns to drastic measures to control a student? These are questions communities ought to be asking when serious infractions by students and educators occur.

Just recently in Georgia, a high school freshman was caught on campus with a loaded pistol and a knife, and a special education teacher felt compelled to use zip ties to restrain a student. The student has been charged accordingly and the teacher, facing a warrant for her arrest, surrendered herself to authorities.

In the case of the high school student, one wonders why a 16-year-old boy has access to a gun and the bullets to load it. It is illegal in Georgia for someone his age to possess a gun. Somehow, though, under the nose of a parent or guardian, he managed to acquire the gun, conceal it and take it to school.

No one was harmed, and officials say no one at the school was under any threat of harm. That’s small comfort to parents.

After questioning the student, authorities should turn their attention to the parents. Among other things, they should ask how it was possible for the child to gain possession of the gun and leave the residence with it. Some fine should be levied as a warning to others. A second offense should be more severe.

Guns do not belong in the hands or bookbags of students on any school campus regardless of intention. Period.

As for the teacher, little has been said about the circumstances surrounding her use of zip ties. Her behavior is under investigation, as it should be. Parents do not send their sons and daughters to school to be harmed or humiliated.

There have been occasions at other schools, however, where teachers were pushed to their limits and resorted to unorthodox or illegal means to quiet or subdue unruly students. In many cases, frustrated teachers lamented the students were an ongoing problem the school administration repeatedly refused to deal with in an official capacity.

Right, wrong or somewhere in-between, the lack of support from top officials left them with no other choice in order to protect themselves and their classes or maintain a suitable environment for learning.

Any sane person would frown upon a heavy-handed approach to discipline. Few would disagree, however, with administrators stepping in and demanding the parents of a persistently disruptive student remedy the situation or homeschool their child.

Rome News-Tribune: It’s more important than ever to take precautions against the pandemic

Oftentimes when one looks back on any event, you’re invariably going to say that you could have done better. The thing is, moving forward you have to work to do better to make that realization worthwhile.

It’s time we look at recent history regarding this pandemic and we learn from the past. We must get vaccinated and stop this pandemic.

This past June was a great time. It looked like we had the pandemic behind us despite warnings from the medical community and media that the delta variant was spreading fast.

But still, we’re all tired, and as a community we conveniently ignored the warnings. Many listened to the loudest voices screaming that vaccines were unsafe or that we needed to wait to see what their effects would be in the future. Many felt that freeing feeling that came along with not wearing a mask all the time.

And looking back, we messed up. We got a little too confident too quickly and we’re now worse off than before.

This isn’t to point a finger. We’re all culpable to one degree or another. But now’s the time to get it together, take the precautions we all know we need to take and get vaccinated.

For months after the coronavirus vaccines were released, many found excuses to not get vaccinated.

They said the vaccines were rushed citing the fact that the three COVID-19 vaccines were initially approved by federal regulators on an emergency fast-track basis rather than under the normal drug-approval process.

Well now that the full, formal approval of the Pfizer vaccine has taken place, some people have moved on to other, more bizarre, excuses.

Yes, masks are inconvenient and not a perfect solution, but there’s no question that they help to keep the virus from spreading unchecked.

Stop getting medical advice or any advice from the internet. There’s just too much directly targeted disinformation out there to casually make a life decision based on a minimum of research.

Many of us have trusted health care providers all our lives. But now that they recommend the vaccine, now suddenly they don’t know what they’re talking about.

Some people have resorted to taking horse de-wormer. How has it come to this?

People have gotten really sick and died, a lot of people have. Scoff all you like but officially 250 people have died in Floyd County alone from COVID-19.

The 250 people here is just a drop in the bucket to the over 20,000 Georgians who have died. That number is just a drop in the bucket to the over 600,000 Americans who have died.

Can we stop this madness?

We never, ever want to write another story about a child dying from this disease. Parents spoke of dropping their children off to a silent school. Other children spoke of a student dying. The specter of the pandemic became a very real thing for many young people and parents that day.

Our hearts go out to the family, friends and Coosa community. We all hugged our loved ones a little tighter that day. And our hearts go out to the family of all those who have been taken from us by this virus.

Let today be the day when we make a change. We can’t change the past but we can act now to shape our future.

Now is the time to do the right thing.

One death is too many.

Get vaccinated.

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