A Tennessee high school student was arrested after pepper spraying a teacher on May 5, 2023. The incident occurred at the Antioch High School in Nashville, Tennessee. The incident was caught on cellphone video and posted and shared throughout social media.
According to police, the black female student was in class when the teacher confiscated her phone for texting and Googling answers on a test. The student then became enraged and sprayed the teacher with pepper spray, once in the classroom, then a second time in the hallway.
The student was arrested and charged with aggravated assault and disorderly conduct. She is being held in the Davidson County Jail on a $50,000 bond.
The school district released a statement saying that they are “deeply troubled” by the incident. They said that they are working with the police to investigate the matter and that they will take “appropriate disciplinary action.”
This is not the first time that a student has assaulted a teacher in Tennessee. Two months ago, this same teacher was also punched in the face after taking a student’s phone who was also caught cheating.
These incidents have raised concerns about the safety of teachers in Tennessee schools. The Tennessee Education Association, the state’s largest teachers union, has called for more funding for school security measures. They have also called for changes to the state’s criminal justice system to make it easier to prosecute students who assault teachers.
The incidents have also sparked a debate about the role of cell phones in schools. Some people believe that cell phones should be banned from schools altogether. Others believe that cell phones can be used as educational tools, but that they should only be allowed to be used during designated times.
Violence in Schools.
These incidents are a reminder of the dangers that teachers face in the classroom. Teachers are often outnumbered and outsized by their students. They are also responsible for the safety of their students, which can be a daunting task.
Schools need to have policies in place to protect teachers from violence. These policies should include clear guidelines for how to handle students who are disruptive or aggressive. Schools should also provide training for teachers on how to de-escalate situations and how to defend themselves if necessary.
Parents can also help to keep their children safe by talking to them about the importance of respecting teachers and following school rules. Parents should also teach their children how to resolve conflict peacefully.
Violence in schools is a serious problem. Everyone needs to work together to create a safe and supportive learning environment for all students. I am actually surprised that pepper spray is allowed on a high school campus.
I am absolutely all for teens having personal alarms and pepper spray to protect themselves while walking home. But then you get instances like this where that ability may be threatened by individuals using defense sprays in inappropriate offensive capacities. If the school imposed an outright ban on all “self-defense weapons,” now you have the potential for unarmed and protected kids to get caught unprepared during an attack.
If this student pulled out pepper spray and thwarted a school shooter, she would have been a hero. If she pulled out her pepper spray and stopped an attempted rapist from attacking her, she would have saved herself from a violent attack. But no, we have an entitled hoodlum attacking a teacher for confiscating a personal device being used to cheat on an assignment.
We have a people problem.
We don’t have a weapon problem, we have a people problem. Self-defense weapons are inanimate objects. Firearms, pepper spray, stun guns, tasers, steel batons, baseball bats, and even pencils do nothing on their own. They just sit there, collecting dust if left alone too long. They cannot act on their own. They can only be used to harm people when someone picks them up and uses them for that purpose.
The real problem is the people who use weapons to harm others. These people are often motivated by anger, hatred, or a desire for power. They may be mentally ill or they may have been raised in a violent environment. Whatever the reason, they are the ones who are responsible for the violence.
We need to address the root causes of violence if we want to reduce it. Better mental health care needs to be available to break the cycle of violence and teach people how to resolve conflict peacefully. We also need to hold people accountable for their actions. If we do these things, we can make a difference in the fight against violence.
Here are some things that we can do to address the root causes of violence:
- Provide better mental health care. Mental illness is a major risk factor for violence. We need to make sure that people who need mental health care can get it.
- Break the cycle of violence. Children who are exposed to violence are more likely to become violent themselves. We need to find ways to break the cycle of violence and give children a chance to grow up in a safe and loving environment.
- Teach people how to resolve conflict peacefully. Violence is often the result of people not knowing how to resolve conflict peacefully. We need to teach people how to communicate effectively, how to compromise, and how to walk away from a conflict if necessary.
- Hold people accountable for their actions. When people commit violence, they need to be held accountable for their actions. This means prosecuting them to the full extent of the law.
If we do these things, we can make a difference in the fight against violence. We can create a safer world for everyone. I do not want to hear a news story next week about a girl being beaten and raped in Tennessee, just after she was banned from having a pepper spray keychain at school instead of carrying it with her on her way home.
As always, be safe and be prepared.