Sandy Hook Promise releases chilling new 'back-to-school' PSA

Dylan Stableford
Senior Writer

A chilling new public service announcement released Wednesday by the gun-violence prevention organization Sandy Hook Promise shows children using back-to-school supplies while trying to survive a school shooting.

The minute-long PSA, shot in the style of a back-to-school commercial, includes children showing off their “back-to-school essentials” as gunfire erupts inside the halls of a school.

One student uses a skateboard to break a window to escape a classroom; another uses her new socks as a tourniquet to stop the bleeding of a wounded classmate.

The ad ends with a sobbing girl texting her mother, “I love you,” as she hides from the shooter in a darkened bathroom.

A scene from "Back-to-School Essentials," the latest PSA from Sandy Hook Promise. (Photo: Yahoo News)

“I would like my own phone to stay in touch with my mom,” she says to the camera just before the door opens.

The ad directs viewers to an online guide created by Sandy Hook Promise to help students and adults recognize the warning signs “that often precede an act of violence or self-harm.”

The group, formed in the wake of the 2012 massacre at Sandy Hook Elementary school in Newtown, Conn., has been producing award-winning PSAs, including “Evan” (2016) and the Emmy-nominated “Point of View” (2018), in its efforts to combat gun violence.

A scene from "Back-to-School Essentials." (Photo: Yahoo News)

Despite another spate of mass shootings, including the massacres in El Paso, Texas, and Dayton, Ohio, in August, efforts to enact major new gun legislation have stalled in Congress.

On Tuesday, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell told reporters that he is waiting for a signal from President Trump to know what gun control measures he favors.

“What I would like to know is ... what he thinks would make some progress and he would sign,” McConnell said. “And until we get that kind of guidance, we’re in a holding pattern.”

In a Wednesday morning tweet, Trump suggested vows by Democratic presidential candidate Beto O’Rourke to ban assault weapons have complicated efforts to reach a bipartisan deal.

“Dummy Beto made it much harder to make a deal,” Trump tweeted. “Convinced many that Dems just want to take your guns away. Will continue forward!”

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