May 12, 1999

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Vol. 18, Issue 35
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Killing classmates is made more imaginable for adolescents by glorified revenge fantasies in the media and video games, and it is easier to accomplish with ready access to guns, but the root cause is neither of these. It is the absence of community for a growing number of young people. And reweaving that safety net of caring and respect for all our youths is everyone's responsibility.
For those of us actually engaged in, or about to be engaged in, the business of raising teenagers, last month's events in Jefferson County, Colo., are more than just a terrifying reminder of the lack of social supports, community safety nets, and thoughtful adult interventions in the lives of many adolescents today.
No one fully understands what happened in Jefferson County, Colo., last month, or in Jonesboro, Ark., last year, and perhaps we never will. But certain facts about how the media operate, and what the media now regularly invite us to share as a culture are worthy of our consideration.
FOUNDATION SUPPORT: Coverage of specific topics in Education Week is supported in part by grants from the Eli and Edythe Broad Foundation, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the CME Group Foundation, the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the Jack Kent Cooke Foundation, the Joyce Foundation, the NoVo Foundation, the Noyce Foundation, the Raikes Foundation, the Wallace Foundation, and the Walton Family Foundation. The newspaper retains sole editorial control over the content of the articles that are underwritten by the foundations. Additional grants in support of Editorial Projects in Education’s data journalism and video capacity come from the Leona M. and Harry B. Helmsley Charitable Trust and the Schott Foundation for Public Education. (Updated 1/1/2017)

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