I’m soooo sick about this. I didn’t find out about it until it was pretty much over, but I just talked to my son, and I can’t keep from crying. He’s safe. But it was a scary thing – and he was scared. I hate that. I hate that some idiot having “fun” can cause so much wasted time, wasted public services and trauma for people going about their own business in a place where they should be safe.
It’s hard enough to leave your son or daughter at college in a new environment among strangers without the added stress of this: “We remain on campus lock-down. We have local, state and federal authorities on campus and are following their guidance. There is not any immediate threat on campus but we will remain sheltered in place until directed by law enforcement that we may re-open the campus.”
My son saw police and FBI agents with rifles. He experienced a heart-pounding fear not knowing if he was safe or whether some lunatic was about to open fire on the campus. Instead of going to class, studying, or hanging out in his dorm, my son spent an agonizing hour and a half trying to decide whether he was safer on a high floor or ground level, whether he should hide in a bathroom or a classroom. That is absolutely a ridiculous thing for a kid on a college campus to have to think about.
Once the incident was determined to be a hoax, the school sent this: “(we) received a telephone call indicating that a vehicle was coming to campus with the intention of shooting members of the campus community. We immediately activated our emergency response team and placed the campus on lock-down. During the ensuing 90 minutes, we cleared the campus and closed all campus entrances. Local, state and federal authorities were involved in our response and provided guidance and advice. All involved authorities have been monitoring social media that relate to these threats. At this point law enforcement officials have advised us that they do not believe there is any legitimate threat. They advised that a number of high schools and colleges received nearly identical threats. We have asked local authorities to increase their patrols of campus over the next few days.”
Feeling frustrated and sad over the state of things in our society. I can't help but wonder about long-term effects. Will these kids be constantly looking over their shoulders? Will the worry linger? I suspect the students will simply move on – as they should. But that's going to be a little harder for the parents. And we're going to be missing our kids a little bit more. Not the beginning we’d hoped for, and certainly not an email I ever want to receive again.