Friday, December 01, 2006

Wisconsin lawmaker urges arming teachers

A state lawmaker, worried about deadly school shootings, suggested arming teachers, principals and other school personnel as a safety measure and a deterrent. For the full article, click here.

When the response of lawmakers to mass shootings is usually to curtail the rights of law-abiding citizens to carry guns for self defense, I found this suggestion refreshingly commonsensical.


Blogger Beth said...

I would personally feel it would make great common sense and keep everyone safer if well-trained teachers, airline personnel, corner gas stations and, sure why not, pastors if they want to, carried guns. The oft-quoted example of Kennesaw, GA . . . just take it a little further.

December 01, 2006 1:01 PM  
Blogger John Byrne said...

I think more good people should carry guns, but I do get a little nervous when people are too comfortable with the idea of a gun. It should be a scary thing!! The last thing I want is for someone to panic and end up shooting something they didn't intend to shoot.

December 01, 2006 1:27 PM  
Blogger Julie said...

Thanks for commenting, Beth and John! I agree with the need to have a healthy fear/respect for guns. I remember the first thing my husband taught me about handling a gun is never to point it at anyone unless you have reason to believe that person is a threat to you and you intend to use the gun (in other words, never point it at anyone you don't intend to shoot!). I also think it's important to be trained in the use of firearms, whether the training is formal (i.e., taking a class in firearms safety) or informal (having a friend or relative proficient in the use of firearms teach you).

December 01, 2006 2:06 PM  
Blogger CrimsonLine said...

It's got its pros and cons. On the one hand, it might put guns in the hand of responsible people. On the other, it might give kids access to guns they might not otherwise be able to get their hands on. Think about it - a gun that you carry for protection should be, by definition, loaded. If a troubled kid knows where a loaded gun is, it could get messy.

So I guess I'm ambivalent about the idea. In your home, a burglar doesn't know whether or not you have a gun, so the more guns that are in homes, the more the deterrent factor kicks in. In your home, you can keep the guns and the ammo separate. How will that work in the school?

December 04, 2006 1:10 PM  
Anonymous Bernie said...

I don't know ... I am seeing a teacher with one spitball in the face too many and she goes over the top. I would think this would be especially true with substitute teachers. Yikes. Seriously (as well as with my tongue in my cheek)I'm not so sure that's a great idea...

Now pastors with a gun - hmmm... I'll have to think about that one, Beth. I am seeing more "Jack Bauer" types becoming pastors. That would be a good thing. No more whimpy sermons and weak theology. :)

Thanks for your Blog Julie it is quite helpful to read. US political issues really don't make the news much here. And if it did ... I couldn't understand it yet anyway!

December 15, 2006 9:03 AM  
Blogger Julie said...

I see your concern, Bernie, yet when guns were more readily available than they are now, there was far less violence in society. In communities where the average citizen has easy access to firearms, there is far less crime (one of these days I'll do a separate post on that and include the documentation). This is because a criminal knows his potential victim could be armed. Look at Baltimore, Maryland; New York City; and Washington, D.C. These cities have the nation's strictest gun control laws yet they lead the nation in violent crime and murder. In fact, D.C. is said to be the country's murder capital even though guns are completely banned there.

To reduce the likelihood of an armed teacher going "postal" and turning a gun on her students, there's the option of requiring psychiatric clearance for teachers who choose to carry firearms. Thorough training in firerms safey should also be required. Think of it this way: some businesses have armed security guards, yet we rarely hear of them shooting up the place when they've had a bad day.

December 15, 2006 2:31 PM  

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