Okay, I’m gonna date myself again, but I wonder how many of you remember the “Duck and Cover” drills we had back in elementary school during the Cuban Missile Crisis?

The drill went thusly: The alarm would go off throughout the whole school, and the teachers would instruct us to get under our desks, tuck ourselves into as small a ball as possible, and cover our heads with our arms.

Why were we doing this? In case of a nuclear attack.

I kid you not.

Well, Cait came home yesterday and shared an equivalent form of insanity. Her school practiced what they call the “Code Red” drill.

The drill went thusly: The alarm went off throughout the whole school while one of the administrators announced “Code Red, Code Red” over the loud speaker. The teachers locked the classroom doors (with the glass windows in them), turned off the lights, and instructed the children to line up against the wall on the side of the door and stay very quiet.

Why were they doing this? In case a terrorist or a nut with a gun had entered the building.

Does anybody besides me have the urge to laugh or cry hysterically at the lunacy of both of these drills? Does anybody on the PLANET think either of these drills could possibly keep any child safe from that particular brand of harm?!!!

Hmmm, let’s see… Nuclear bomb vs. children under desks. A nanosecond? And, oh, a terrorist (which, let’s remind ourselves, so far has not attacked any schools) or a very disturbed teenage kid with a gun (the most likely attacker, and in this case, a kid who would have also been included in these Code Red drill practices) vs. a locked door and lights out. Maybe three seconds?

What is the school thinking? That this kid is going to find a locked door and say to himself, “Oh well… door’s locked, guess Scottie beamed everybody up in the middle of a school day. Nobody here to kill, so I’ll just go home now.” (Of course, we won’t even speculate about this kid already being INSIDE the building or classroom to start…)

Oh, this just makes me want to pull my hair out! Administrators — what do you think you are accomplishing with such ridiculous drills?!!! Besides scaring the begeezus out of innocent children?!!! This is the best you can come up with?!!! This is your idea of promoting safety and preparedness?!!! I do understand the urge to do something so as not to feel powerless. But this has about the same effectiveness as patting your head, rubbing your tummy and jumping on one foot to make yourselves feel better!!! What a mad, mad world we live in!

Okay, I’ve used up my allotted number of exclamation points for the year, I’m taking a deep breath now, and calming down. All righty then. Done venting. As an ex-EMT trained in emergency preparedness, I’m off to go speak as civilly as I can with the principal to see if there’s a way to come up with something a little more, ah, effective.