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The Truth About the Fact: An International Journal of Literary Nonfiction

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Location: Los Angeles, California, United States

The Truth About the Fact: A Journal of Literary Nonfiction is an international journal committed to the idea that excellence in the art of letters can play a vital role in transforming the planet we share.

Friday, February 8, 2013

The School of Ignorance

            I had graduated from Gardena High School in June 2008.  It’s one of the worst schools in the Los Angeles Unified School District with a dropout rate of 46%.  Girls get pregnant in freshmen year, boys join gangs and some go to jail for misdemeanors or worst crimes.  Whatever the case is many leave school by the age of sixteen.  People say it depends on the parents or the circle of friends but I think it’s a mixture of both, including the person who decides what choices to commit.  For instance, all of my friends dropped out because they got pregnant and may I add at the same time!  I chose not to go to their parties late at night and I didn’t want to drink or do drugs.  The peer pressure never hit me and I have my parents to thank. 
Although I took honors and AP classes I can’t say that they helped me.  Each one of my classes was extremely easy and I didn’t gain the sufficient knowledge that would prepare me for college.  Most teachers give up caring for their ignorant students because those kids don’t give a damn whether they graduate or not.  The students who actually desire to learn are affected by the majority of idiots who cause the teachers to give up.  Not only does the faculty not care for their students, they also don’t care for their safety.  I’ve experienced numerous lock-downs because of violent actions but I never thought I would fear the outcomes after graduation.
Spring 2011
            I had just finished my shift at the LMU bookstore and since I don’t get signal down there I turned it off.  Once I got out and turned it on I was bombarded with text messages about Jorge, my younger brother.
            “Hey is Jorge okay?”  “Did Jorge call you?”  “How is Jorge?” 
            I immediately freak out and texted everyone, “What the hell happen?”  The first to answer was Kristina, “There was a shooting at school and it’s on lock-down!”  “What!?  Do you know anything else?”  “No”, she sadly responds.  I didn’t have a car at the time so I was desperate to leave campus.  The only thing I thought of was calling my mom.  “Mom!  There was a shooting at Jorge’s school.”  She cut me off before I could continue, “OH MY GOD! I’m leaving!”  Somewhat relieved I take a deep breath and I realized I could have called Jorge.  The phone rang and I could hear how fast my heart was beating.  I was getting desperate because he didn’t answer but finally, “Hello?”  “Hey are you ok?”  “Yea I’m fine.  The shooting was next door”, he replies.  Though I knew he was okay I still feared for his safety since I didn’t know what happened to the shooter. After I was done talking to him I ran to the library to see if I could find any news online.  I came across images of the young boy being pinned to the ground by the SWAT team. 
            Eventually I learned that the boy had brought a gun to school because he feared a local gang might hurt him.  Once in class he dropped his backpack and the gun went off piercing a boy’s neck and skidded through a girl’s head.  From what I heard the boy recovered but the girl didn’t.  The next day each student was searched before entering school but soon after there was no security measures taken and it continues to be a very violent school.

Gardena High School Survivor,


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