Kudos to students at Midd-West for having courage to do the right thing

This past Friday, several students at Midd-West High School alerted the school’s staff to one particular young man who was making disturbing threats of violence, according to the Middleburg Police Department and Midd-West School District.

In fact, police said the whistleblowers told staff they overheard the student calling himself a “ticking time bomb” and that he was “ready to blow up.”

According to police, in speaking to a social worker, the 17-year-old student said he wanted to lead “the purge” — apparently referencing the film franchise and spinoff TV series in which all crime, including murder, is legal for 12 hours once per year — and that he wanted to “kill all his classmates in response to all the bullying occurring in the school.”

Any of this sound familiar? It should. Comments like these seem to be a common theme among the far-too-frequent school shootings that have taken place across this country in the past two decades.

And, after the fact, how many times have we heard people who worked at a school where one of these tragic events took place, students who attended the school or members of the public express a lack of surprise that the perpetrator would do “something like this”?

Do we have any way of knowing whether the young man in question at Midd-West would have acted upon his alleged threats? Of course not. But what we do know is that we won’t ever have to find out thanks to these students doing the right thing and saying something before it was too late.

If such a tragedy would have struck at Midd-West, it would have undoubtedly made national and possibly even international headlines. But these kids who had the courage to speak up — and the administration at Midd-West who handled this the right way — deserve our highest praise.

We urge every student at every school, whether local or on the other side of the world, to say something if they see or hear something.

You never know when the smallest piece of information can prevent a heartbreaking situation from unfolding.