Folk may say, and it’s common in the south, that we’re living in perilous times. That’s been said since I was a girl and it’s been a long time since I’ve been that. The only difference between then and now is that I watch the news and I didn’t do too much of that as a kid. I was foot-loose and fancy-free in some respects. Other folk watched the news for me and all I was concerned about was playing with my tea sets, shooting marbles and racing boys up and down the street. I?kicked butt!?I was a Tomboy to my heart but I was girly too.
I wore little girl dresses in the thick of cold weather when I went to school on the city bus for awhile ’cause I was out of my district. Up until fifth grade, I went to school in Atlanta. The same school my mom and her siblings went. We had one principal and I don’t think there was an assistant. There was one teacher who thought he was one pretty much and he walked about biting his bottom lip, looking to take a swing at some kid who was acting up with a taped up ruler. And yes, it met my backside plenty of times. I was a cutter every now and then.
I clearly remember there were no resource officers in my school. In high school, there wasn’t one either. Just a guy who monitored the parking lot to make sure unauthorized folk weren’t hanging about and kids skipping class. I never skipped class ’cause I didn’t have a car. I can only guess I might’ve done it from time to time if I had.
Just last year, my son, Mr Boy who now calls himself Masta Unk, says it was nothing to see a gun in his school everyday. He’d already well since graduated when he told me this. You see, they just don’t tell that a gun is in the bookbag or locker. It simply becomes the norm and they keep quiet, maybe so they won’t be a target. We don’t live in that area anymore but I don’t see that where one lives really matters. There’s never been a shooting there, fortunately.
To conclude my backstory, I was in the Army National Guard for awhile. I was a sharp shooter. I liked that I could hit a target dead on. I used all manner of weapons in training. I was a soldier who could hold my own ’cause that’s all a part of what I had to learn. I’m not a soldier anymore. Neither are the children. School is not a battleground. It’s sad that we’ve come to where we are and I don’t know if or how we can ever go back.
What do you think?