New Delhi : A mother has described how she broke down after taking a picture of her three-year-old daughter standing on a toilet, only to discover that she was practicing for a lockdown drill in the event of a terrorist gun attack. The daughter revealed she was practicing what she’d been taught to do if ever she got stuck in a bathroom during an attack.
Stacey Wehrman Feeley says this made her realise all her daughter’s innocence was gone. Meanwhile Stacey , from Traverse City in Michigan, posted the photograph on Facebook and said that at first she thought her daughter was "doing something cute". Ms Feeley said that she then cried after her daughter explained she was taught to do this if a gunman entered her preschool while she was in the toilets. In a country that has already lost too many of its young to gunfire, the need to drill even children this young is both crucial and heartbreaking. In her post, Ms Feeley makes an impassioned plea to the politicians of her country to make better decisions for the future generations.
They are barely 3 and they will hide in bathroom stalls standing on top of toilet seats. I do not know what will be harder for them? Trying to remain quiet for an extended amount of time or trying to keep their balance without letting a foot slip below the stall door, she says on Facebook. The post is even more poignant since it comes days after a gunman opened fire, killing 49 at a nightclub in Orlando and brings back terrifying memories of the December 2012 mass shooting that killed 28 (including the shooter) at the Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut.
Ms Feeley also argues in favour of gun control and universal background checks. "No one thinks gun control will be 100% crime control. But maybe, just maybe, it helps 1% or 2% or 50%? Who knows unless we try?" she asks in her post. And her questions don't seem unjustified considering these statistic collected GunViolenceArchive.org, a non-profit corporation that provides information about gun-related violence in the US. According to their database, the total number of gun-related incidents in the US add up to a scary 24,721 that have led to over 6,350 deaths, just within this year.
According to their database, the total number of gun-related incidents in the US add up to a scary 24,721 that have led to over 6,350 deaths, just within this year. "I am not pretending to have all the answers or even a shred of them, but unless you want your children standing on top of a toilet, we need to do something!" Ms Feeley says at the end of her post, words that will or should make anyone shudder. Ms Feeley's post has resonated with other parents who are equally scared for their children. "I remembered doing fire drills when I was younger, can't imagine my kids will start doing shooting drills soon," says one commenter. "I am so very sorry for your little girl and for all children being raised in the country. We MUST stop the gun violence without forcing another generation to grow up in this kind of unnecessary fear. Our children need to be children — innocents — protected — valued!" says another.