School shootings happen rarely, and they're terrifying to parents everywhere, which why they're such a gripping topic. Do the TV networks maybe, a little bit, overstate their importance in the national news cycle for the sake of ratings? NO! While this would be an economically sound strategy, corporations would never do something despicable just to make more money, so let's drop that idea pronto.
Motivated solely by civic responsibility, some companies make products designed and marketed to help shield children during school shootings. Do they care about "profits"? NO! Again, it would be awful to benefit from murder, and surely, no American company would do such a thing. These products exist ONLY to help kids survive tragedy.
For example, The Lifeplate is a life-saving slab of armor that you slip into your child's backpack. Theoretically, this plate will protect them from a murderer's bullets, as long as they can find their backpack in time, and crouch behind it. It's not a large object, so you've got to train them in the art of parking their brain and some other good organs behind the small piece of padding in a time of crisis.
The Bulletblocker is similar to the Lifeplate, but this time the whole backpack is bulletproofed. If you want to avoid the awkward Lifeplate question of "Mom, why did you buy me the absolute smallest, cheapest murder-prevention accessory?" then this is what you want. A resourceful child could open the backpack and use it to cover the majority of his or her body in the case of a mass-murder. You might note on the manufacturer's listing that it's not for sale in Connecticut, but that's not a big deal. There's never been a school shooting in Connecticut, anyway.
The LifePack is similar to the BulletBlocker, but it's a little cheaper, and a little cooler-looking. It's a decent tradeoff, considering that school shootings are a statistically insignificant cause of death. And a little style's a smart way to distract your child from your assertion that "you'll need this, because, at any time, an insane man might burst into your school and murder as many people as possible."
Is your kid some kind of fedora-wearer or ponytail-boy who refuses to carry a cute backpack or life-saving shield-pad? Not an issue. The Bulletproof Briefcase enables your pre-teen or hormonal hat-dork to survive gun-murder as fashionably as possible. Unfortunately, it won't stop the statistically much-more-likely occurrence of someone calling him "Fedork" or "Bronytail." If only someone would make some sort of a cloak that offers something like bulletproof protection, but from words...
Originally meant for soldiers, the Bulletproof Bible enables your child to literally praise the Lord and pass the ammunition. There's an answer for everything in that great big book, except maybe why a divine creator would tear families apart using an armed Caucasian man as His vessel. There's some loophole, I'm sure. Possibly the same one they used for the Crusades.
The bizarrely named "AIMBOT.EXE" bulletproof shield is, I guess, marketed to teens. Instead of the Lifeplate's parent-friendly "safety" and "protection" speech, you get '90s-font design and pictures of bullets the AIMBOT.EXE has defeated. With its Counterstrike-ish design, the AIMBOT.EXE proves video games don't teach children to murder. They actually teach children to avoid murder. Case closed.
Drew Fairweather is the author of three daily sites: The Worst Things for Sale, Toothpaste for Dinner, and Married to the Sea.
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