Liberty Just in Case

A Dialogue for the September 12th World

Dubious Distinction

Posted by zaphriel on March 14, 2006

Reno Made The National News…
And it almost ruined my lunch hour…

Two Hurt in Reno Middle School Shooting

Pine_middle_School.JPGRENO, Nev. — Two students were injured Tuesday when another student opened fire with a gun at a Reno middle school, authorities said.

The Washoe County School District said one student at Pine Middle School was wounded in the shoulder and taken to Washoe Medical Center for treatment.

The other received a superficial wound to the leg and was treated at the scene.

The alleged shooter was arrested and police said the weapon, a .38-caliber pistol, was recovered.

Authorities said the shooting occurred outside the school cafeteria just before 9 a.m.

School was on a delayed start because of snow and officials said not all students had arrived at the time of the incident.

The school was in lock down for about an hour before students were taken home either by bus or released into the custody of a parent or guardian, district officials said.

Yep, that’s it. No one dead… And somehow that’s national news… Heck it was barely Reno news except it cause quite a traffic jam, and allot of parental panic. No less than 10 police cars showed up, not to mention 5 news vans, all on a two lane road, just outside of where I work.

Don’t get me wrong, this is concerning, and a little disturbing, for us here in Reno… But national news? Hardly, if this had happened at the 7-11 down the street (as it often does in that neighborhood) with the same children involved, it would have been less than a blurb on the local morning news.

4 Responses to “Dubious Distinction”

  1. Gayle said


    Let’s face it. Since Columbine, violence in schools is a big issue-and it should be.

    We’d like to think that our schools are a little bit safer than the 7-11 down the street. I know that I would, given I have a daughter who’s a high school student. My daughter’s school was recently the target of a bomb threat. Although the police believed it was a hoax and the school was not closed down for the day, I was nervous and jumpy, waiting for the phone to ring.

    Keeping our schools safe for our children is an important issue, and I’m in favor of reporting school violence on the news, no matter where it occurs.

  2. Mark said

    It’s a balancing act, Gayle. I worked a locked adolescent psychiatric unit during and just after Columbine. Suddenly kids who MAY have needed outpatient counseling were winding up on our unit as schools, parents, and the media took a horrible incident and generalized it to the wider population. Kids who did not need the stigma of a psych admission got one anyway.

    Over the years, Columbine has become a political club for anti-gun activists to enforce “no-tolerance” rules in schools, and to play up incidents like the one Matt describes. Sad, really. And the wrong lessons to take from Columbine.

  3. Matthew said

    Addressing ONLY school violence ignores the issue that is actually there, and that is violence in general. The particular school mentioned in my post is in the most violent area of Reno, shooting happen there at least weekly, and a few hit the news. But place it in a school, and now suddenly it is National News worthy? No, no more than any one the other violence in the very same area committed by kids, on kids, any where else. Columbine is only now the excuse to sensationalize it for the school, but ignore it everywhere else.

  4. Gayle said


    I also worked at a psych hospital during the aftermath of Columbine. Our medical director was an excellent child and adolescent psychiatrist. His strategy was to calm worried parents by suggesting that their children first try outpatient therapy at the hospital, rather than admission. This worked with most of the cases.

    I’ve always felt that one of the most valuable lessons we could take away from Columbine was to be more aware of our children, but not to panic.

    You’re right, Matthew. We do need to address violence in general. I think it’s easier for people to address violence among children and adolescence. I’ve noticed that most of the people I come in contact with are more concerned about violence among younger people. There still seems to be a sense that older people should be able to control themselves, whereas younger people still need help and guidance, and adults can actually do something about them. Just what I’ve noticed in my own surroundings.

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