School boycotts? Yes, parents must pressure Congress to pass smart gun laws

School boycotts? Yes, parents must pressure Congress to pass smart gun laws

On the day seniors graduate from Lafayette High School in Wildwood, Mo., students walk past a memorial to victims of the Santa Fe High School shooting. (David Carson / St. Louis Post-Dispatch) In the wake of another mass shooting at a public school, a colleague and I floated the idea of a parent boycott of schools to drive action by Congress. The idea is gaining traction — parents across the country understand that a national crisis deserves a national response. And our voices, and votes, are the most powerful tools we possess. The concept is straightforward. School parents are a massive voting block — maybe 100 million strong — and live in every Congressional district in the country. After the Labor Day holiday in September, if they kept their kids out of school for a day or a week or even two weeks, maybe Congress would do something about gun safety. Obviously, many parents can’t get off work to keep kids at home. But maybe some retirees and nonworking adults can help them out. Employers and community organizations like YMCAs could step up and partner in creative ways. If the boycott focused on members of Congress who are in the pocket of the gun lobby, it could be especially effective, even if Congress refuses to act. They would face the voters at the polls in November and hopefully pay a political price. The idea is complicated and inconvenient. But the current reality is horrific. No matter how many die […]

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