A Wisconsin sheriff sounded off on what he believes to be the “root cause” of mass shootings in the U.S., and called on parents to discipline their children more effectively.
Dodge County Sheriff Dale Schmidt penned a Facebook post Thursday arguing that a major cause of mass shootings may be a radical culture shift that has occurred in the U.S. over the years — a culture shift caused by weak parenting.
“Following every mass killing, I ask myself, what has happened to our society?” Schmidt wrote. “I also wonder what the solution is to ensure our families do not become future victims.”
The Wisconsin sheriff pointed out how “years ago, people would go to school and have hunting rifles in their vehicles,” but “mass violence in schools and other locations did not happen as in society today.”
He added that there is a “root cause” fueling the drastic shift that has occurred over the years, and that “there is no quick and easy solution” to stop it.
“It’s my belief that the root cause starts with our youth lacking basic skills including respect for authority figures like parents and teachers, the ability to cope with conflict and the ability to handle rejection,” Schmidt stated.
Schmidt added that substance abuse and mental health problems are also a driving factor, but noted that “it is imperative that we raise our children in a manner that instills respect for authority.”
According to Schmidt, every child needs to face “disappointment” at some point in his or her life in order to build character and develop a basic understanding of how to handle adversity.
“While no one wants their child to ever be disappointed or upset, when they are young, they need to face conflict and disappointment and learn to resolve it appropriately under the guidance of adults,” the sheriff wrote.
He continued: “When youth are not taught how to handle difficult situations, they must find their own way to cope, which without guidance may be result in unhealthy or even dangerous future behavior.”
Schmidt explained that his motive behind penning the piece was not place blame. Rather, he said he hopes to start a conversation that could lead to an effective solution.
However, with gun control being the end-all solution touted by the left, he chimed in with his thoughts on the matter.
“Many have strong opinions about gun control but realistically gun control will do nothing more than place a very small band aid on a much bigger problem,” he stated in his conclusion.
And Schmidt may have a point. A Crime Prevention Research Center study that used data from 1950 through July 10, 2016 showed that 98.4 percent of mass shootings have occurred in areas where guns are banned.
The sheriff’s post received a lot of positive feedback on social media, according to The Washington Times.
On Facebook user wrote: “Very well said…….and maybe putting God and religion back in our life could help the situation.”
Another user thanked Schmidt for refraining from placing the blame on firearms.
“Thank you for recognizing the true problem and not just focusing on a gun control agenda like some of your colleagues around the country,” the user wrote. “Like you said, it is a very complex issue.”
Truth and Accuracy
We are committed to truth and accuracy in all of our journalism. Read our editorial standards.