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classroom-1910012_1920Tonight at dinner our 4th grader and 2nd grader described their lock down drill at school today.

That’s the one where they prepare for someone entering the school with evil on their mind.

We didn’t have these in the 80’s. Though I did participate in live bomb threat evacuations in college. That was an interesting semester. In grade school it was strictly fire drills. It’s saddening to imagine my children doing their drill. It makes me worry until I remind myself that I don’t worry.

During the blistering heart of the cold war children from sea to shining sea ducked and covered routinely. Students were instructed to go under their desks and protect their head and necks from debris from the bomb. Which knowing what we know about nuclear explosions seems a bit inadequate. Somehow it got them through. Or, it didn’t and it freaked everybody’s freak. No more Dr. Strangelove either way.

Now we grow our threats right here in our cold-war victory gardens. (While Russia influences our elections, allegedly.) The violence we perpetuate on ourselves these days is extraordinary. The latest flavor? Mail order mayhem. Exploding deliveries brought to your doorstep.

All the while our children pretend to crouch silently in a bathroom to avoid catching a bullet.

What world are we living in? (Does it sound like the world we thought we were insulated from on the Island of America?)

We think we are at the top of the food chain. We live like we are the culmination of creation, deserving of worship and glory. Our ancestors may have fallen prey to nature. We are above nature. Yet, no generation has slain the dragon, only each other. We are no exception and are not exceptional in how we conform to this. We are no further along. Our hashtags have failed us.

I hope we don’t realize later about school shooting drills what we now know about preparing for nuclear oblivion.

You feel safe but…



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