Popular TV tackles national issue on school violence

Posted April 17, 2013 at 11:09 am

BABBLING BROOKS column–Express Editor Kim Brooks

I was never the star of my high school choir. In fact, during my sophomore year, I realized my spectacular falsetto was better reserved for my car or the shower, so I opted out of choir, forever destroying my chances on “The Voice” or “American Idol.” (The choices we make in life…)

With that said, I don’t know why, for the life of me, I’ve been drawn into the hit high school choir soap opera “Glee” since it premiered in 2009. This show is quite amazing really! It has great musical numbers, for one! I can’t tell you how much I’ve spent downloading “Glee” hits on my iTunes.

The storylines, while centered around high school students and now college-age “adults,” keep me tuning in for more week after week.

When the show takes a hiatus for several weeks, it’s like agony waiting for its return!

You’d also be surprised by those who regularly tune in to watch “Glee.” The very least person you might expect could just be a “Gleek.”

I could go on and on about “Glee,” but the show’s most recent episode last Thursday night drew in huge ratings, as well as much controversy.

The nature of the show usually entails the high school choir preparing for an upcoming musical competition or school performance, while the college students are on their own trying to make tough adult life decisions.

This past week’s episode dealt with a school shooting. One of the students brought a gun to school for protection and it accidentally goes off, causing the entire high school to panic. Students fled into bathroom stalls, into classrooms and out of the school building. Teachers and staff tried to protect their students and remain safe themselves.

“Glee” is usually jam-packed with numerous musical numbers throughout the show and a storyline that picks up from the previous episode and ends with a cliffhanger until next time. This particular episode was very somber and chilling.

The morning after, major news networks were all abuzz with articles and blogs on whether the subject matter of the show was appropriate or not so soon after the Newtown, Conn., shooting. Not to mention, the D.C. Senate and House are in the midst of a huge debate right now concerning gun control laws.

For me, watching the show, I couldn’t believe the creators of “Glee” wanted to tackle such a controversial topic. But then throughout the course of the show, as events unfolded, I thought now is as good a time as any to spark public comment and debate. If our lawmakers are discussing gun laws and gun issues, why shouldn’t the general public? I mean, these laws will affect everyone is some capacity, right?

Whether you agree or disagree with the proposed gun laws, whether you’re Republican or Democrat, whether you hold a weapons permit or not, the recent string of shootings in this country is serious! Popular TV shows like “Glee” that already bring in huge ratings are bringing the issue to the forefront. I see nothing wrong with that.

I’m not writing this column to voice my stance on gun control. It doesn’t matter. I’m not trying to ignite the fire and cause a stir; this episode did that just fine. I praise the show’s creators for hitting the nail on the head with school violence. If now’s not a good time to bring it up, when is?