News Briefs

The biggest local, national, and international news stories from the past month

by Isabella Franklin

Hollywood Sexual Assault Allegations

#MeToo

Harvey Weinstein and other public figures, such as Bill O’Reilly, Louis C.K., George Takei, and Kevin Spacey, have come under fire due to many accusations of sexual assault recently. An equal, if not larger, number of celebrities, including Jennifer Lawrence, Gwyneth Paltrow, Terry Crews, and Anthony Rapp, have publicly opened up about their personal experience with sexual harassment and abuse. A movement called “#MeToo” has sprung up across social media as a platform for assault victims to share their stories and show how common these horrible experiences may be.

Amazon Announces New Service

Amazon has announced a new service called “Amazon Key,” in which customers may sign up to allow Amazon mail couriers to come into their homes to drop off packages. The concept is intended to reduce the number of packages stolen outside homes, but Amazon buyers are concerned about the irony of the product; allowing a stranger into your home so you can avoid theft has raised many questions about this product. In addition, many customers have brought up safety concerns about Amazon Key.

Catalonia Separates from Spain

Catalonia, a region of Spain whose capital is Barcelona, has declared independence from the country of Spain by an illegal referendum from the Catalan people. The parliament in Catalonia passed a motion to officially declare independence on October 27. The Catalan government and people believe that they deserve to be their own country as they are financially independent from Spain, culturally separate from Spain, and speak Catalan, an entirely different language than the majority of Spain speaks. The Spanish government is not letting Catalonia go without a fight, bringing police forces to keep protests for Catalan independence at bay.

Shield Road Re-Opens

Shield Road, which has been closed since June 12 of this year, re-opened on October 31, 2017 for public use. Between Parker Road and Baker Road, the road had a very high amount of daily traffic by students coming to and from Dexter High School, along with Dexter residents who live nearby who use it to cut through town. The road’s closure resulted in an inconvenience for many people due to traffic backups and having to take detours through town, so the bridge’s upgrade and re-opening has been a source of relief for Dexter’s residents.

Vehicular Attack in Lower Manhattan

 

There was a violent attack in Manhattan by a 29-year-old man on October 31, 2017. The attacker, Sayfullo Saipov, drove his pickup truck on a Hudson River bike path, killing eight people and injuring 11 more. Of the victims who died, five were Argentine tourists celebrating a school reunion, and another victim was identified as Belgian. Saipov was shot by police when he left his car after crashing into a school bus. He is currently alive in custody.

Michigan Considers Bill for Concealed Carry in Schools

On November 8, Michigan’s Senate passed a bill that allows concealed carry of firearms in former gun-free zones, such as schools, churches, hospitals, and daycares. Gun owners who take 8 hours of extra training will be allowed to carry concealed pistols in these areas. The bill still needs to go through the House of Representatives to determine if it will be enacted, which will happen after Thanksgiving. Many people were shocked and upset by the Senate’s decision, as the bill’s approval came only three days after a mass shooting in a Texas church that left 26 dead.

Arming teachers is not the answer to school safety

Teachers should not have the right to bear arms in school.  Guns were designed for one reason and one reason only: to kill.

Since the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Connecticut, people have debated whether or not teachers should carry weapons to make sure something like that never happens again.

I understand the idea that if a bad person comes to the school, the teacher could shoot him or her and prevent a tragedy. However, I don’t think it’s that simple.

Even prison guards are not allowed to have guns, in case there is a riot and one of the prisoners took the gun and used it. While we don’t have a bunch of convicts in Dexter, I am certain in other areas around the country they have some kids who might find or take a teacher’s gun and use it in a bad way.

It is always a good idea to keep guns and other weapons away and out of reach from children.  I’ve heard of cases on the news where some kid finds his dad’s gun and while playing with it, accidentally pulls the trigger and shoots himself.  If we allowed teachers to bear arms, kids wouldn’t necessarily get their hands on them.  But why even take that chance?

If everyone is so uncertain of public safety in our schools, perhaps its time to invest more in school security.  And what if, instead of using guns which were designed to kill, we give the teachers Tazers or stun guns which are designed to stun instead of kill?

If we allowed teachers to carry guns that would be the most irresponsible thing we could do for school safety.  Guns and safety are two words you don’t see together often.