One aspect of unnecessary gun violence can be seen in school shootings. Sine Columbine shook high school children and families across the United States, the prevalence of school shootings has only increased. Many feel that the increasing occurrence of these tragedies serve as a stark sign for the necessity to allocate more resources to mental health and mental illness. The following advertisement created by the Sandy Hook Project (stemming from the 2012 elementary school massacre) depicts how easy it is for signs of potential aggressors to go unnoticed in today’s society.
The video takes a sinister turn towards the end where the audience is caught off guard by the entrance of a shooter at the high school. Cycling back through the chain of events leading up to the shooting, it is evident that multiple clear signs of aggression and potential danger were present in the shooter, but that the audience was too distracted by the budding love between the high school boy and girl to recognize the signs. This advertisement begs the question: What are the signs of mental illness and potential aggression, and are they recognizable in a way that could ultimately lead to prevention?