Cal State Long Beach Professor explains book: 'Reducing School Shootings'

Professor William Jeynes at Cal State Long Beach talks about eight factors to reduce school shootings.
LONG BEACH, Calif. (KABC) -- After 19 children and two adults were killed on Tuesday in Uvalde, Texas, many Americans are now asking, "What can we do to stop it?"

For Professor William Jeynes at California State University Long Beach, he says he has asked himself the same.

He invested his time to research years of data about shootings and acts of violence and published a book in 2020 called "Reducing School Shootings."

The inspiration behind the book were his own students. He says he's had about 18 students who barely escaped a school shooting.

He recalled one story from a student who said she was a target in the Columbine High School shooting in 1999.

"After class dismissed, according to my student's testimony, the future shooter came up to her and said, 'You embarrassed me in front of the whole class and I just want you to know this is going to cost you your life,'" Jeynes said.

After studying years of research, Jeynes determined that there are eight primary factors that can help reduce school shootings.

He says you can't pick and choose what factor is more important. He says all of them have to addressed to stop school shootings.

Factor one is gun control, such as having smart guns that use pin pad or finger print technology to use them.

Jeynes says the second factor is banning assault weapons.

The third factor is a child's quality of home life with their family. Jeynes says it's important for at least one parent to be present and actively involved in their child's life.

Factor four is reducing violence in shows, movies and video games.

The fifth factor is limiting violence on social media.

"I think many times when you have these video games where it's us versus them, whoever that 'them' is, that also contributes in a decline of compassion for those other groups," Jeynes said.

The sixth factor is character development and education in schools.

The seventh factor is a moment of silence. He says children should be taught at a young age to have a moment of reflection or silence before they act, especially if they're angry.

The last factor is addressing mental health.

Jeynes says it all goes back to a person's childhood and that the biggest takeaway is that people underestimate how kindness can go a long way.

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