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Michigan students killed in downstate school shooting

Author Steven T. Seagle wrote, “Something isn’t fiction just because you choose not to acknowledge it.”

This has become the sad reality of American culture and it’s long past time that we address the neverending wave of school shootings in U.S. schools.

On Tuesday, a 15-year-old sophomore opened fire at his Michigan high school, killing four students, including a 16-year-old boy who died in a deputy’s patrol car on the way to a hospital, authorities said.

Seven other people were wounded, some critically, including a 14-year-old girl who was placed on a ventilator after surgery.

Investigators were still trying to determine a motive for the shooting Tuesday at Oxford High School, located in a community of about 22,000 people roughly 30 miles north of Detroit, Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard told The Associated Press.

“The person that’s got the most insight and the motive is not talking,” he said at a news conference late Tuesday.

Deputies rushed to the school around lunch time as more than 100 calls flooded 911 dispatchers with reports of a shooter. They arrested the student in a hallway within minutes of their arrival. He put his hands in the air as deputies approached, Bouchard said.

The boy’s father on Friday bought the 9 mm handgun used in the shooting, Bouchard said. He didn’t know why the man bought the semi-automatic pistol, which his son had been posting pictures of and practicing shooting, Bouchard said.

At a vigil Tuesday night at LakePoint Community Church, Leeann Dersa choked back tears as she hugged friends and neighbors. Dersa has lived nearly all of her 73 years in Oxford. Her grandchildren attended the high school.

“Scared us all something terrible. It’s awful,” Dersa said of the shooting.

It’s been 22 years since the massacre at Columbine High School. Countless murders have taken place in schools across America since that fateful day in 1999, and it appears as though our lawmakers haven’t learned a thing. It’s time we recognized that inaction isn’t working — the body count continues to rise, and in a handful of weeks, the media will shift its coverage to the next senseless act, rendering the victims of Tuesday’s tragedy a mere footnote in the long history of school shootings. We cannot allow this to be the way it works anymore.

It’s time for us to let our representatives in Washington know that enough is enough. Serious efforts and regulations must be put into place to protect our children across this country, and anything short of that is completely unacceptable.

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