Tuesday, October 03, 2006

What to do about all these school shootings?

My opinion is one that would probably make most people gasp in horror because their minds cannot conceive of such a thing: arm the staff. Allow teachers and other approved staff members to carry a concealed firearm.

Think about this for a second. Where in this country are you almost guaranteed to find a place where no one is armed? If you said "public schools" then you win a cookie. There is even a federal law that designates schools as "gun-free zones", with signs hanging around the school area alerting everyone to this fact. That law was found to be unconstitutional by the Supreme Court, but Congress reauthorized it anyway back in 1996.

So, since the only person on a school campus that is guaranteed to be armed is the psycho(s) who goes to the school to slaughter as many students as he can, schools have become rather juicy targets for these killers. This week, that became rather evident with the school murders in Colorado, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania.

In the 1970s, Israel had a problem with PLO terrorists going onto school campuses and killing students and teachers. Israel confronted this problem by allowing teachers to arm themselves. Problem solved. For more on about what Israel did, read this interview of a former Israeli official that is posted on the website for one of my favorite political groups, Jews for the Preservation of Firearms Ownership, Inc. He says in part:
Teachers and kindergarten nurses now started to carry guns, schools were protected by parents (and often grandpas) guarding them in voluntary shifts. No school group went on a hike or trip without armed guards. The Police involved the citizens in a voluntary civil guard project "Mishmar Esrachi", which even had its own sniper teams. The Army's Youth Group program, "Gadna", trained 15 - 16 year old kids in gun safety and guard procedures and the older high school boys got involved with the Mishmar Esrachi. During one noted incident, the "Herzliyah Bus massacre" (March '78, hijacking of a bus, 37 dead, 76 wounded), these youngsters were involved in the overall security measures in which the whole area between North Tel Aviv and the resort town of Herzlyiah was blocked off, manning roadblocks with the police, guarding schools kindergartens etc.
For an example of an armed school staff member that is closer to home, look to Pearl, Mississippi in October of 1997. Luke Woodham stabbed his mother to death, then grabbed a gun and went to his local high school to take out his frustrations on his classmates. After killing two students and wounding several more, Woodham stopped to reload. That is when the assistant principal put a gun to Luke Woodham's head and told him to drop the weapon. Woodham complied and the assistant principal held his gun on Woodham for a full five minutes until police arrived. When the shooting started, the a.p. had run to his vehicle which was apparently parked off campus, and retrieved the gun that he kept in there. So what stopped Woodham from killing more people with his gun? Another gun of course, and it wasn't a police gun either. It was an assistant principal who was probably violating some law by having that gun in his car near the campus in the first place. Thank God he was a rule breaker!

All this school shooting chaos has spilled onto my campus over the last two days. Yesterday, some graffiti was found in one of the girls bathrooms that said something to the effect of, "I want to shoot Name, Name, and Name in the head. This will happen on 10/5/06." The last part of the grafitti was written almost as if the writer chickened out and decided to soften her message when she wrote, "I will do this with a Be-Be gun (sic.)" A "be-be" gun, huh? Wow, violent and uneducated.

In light of the national incidents and our bathroom literary misadventures, our administration and district office decided that we will have an intruder-on-campus drill sometime on Wednesday. We teachers were given the procedures, and we were told to practice them with our homeroom students at the end of the day. I was appalled at the procedures. I mean, I have heard of these procedures before elsewhere, but practicing them today really set off my bullshit meter.

What the procedures essentially tell you to do is to cower in your room and wait for the shooter to come in and pluck you off one by one as you lie there helplessly. We are to lock the door, shut off the lights, and all the students are to hide under their desks out of sight of the windows. No chance to fight back in any of this, you are just supposed to cower there and hope the shooter doesn't pick your room. Of course, if he doesn't pick your room, that means he picked someone else's instead. Either way, his gun has to be met with someone else's gun for the slaughter to end. Is it going to be from a teacher who is right there on sight, or is it going to be from a policeman who is several minutes away?

Don't worry if you think I am a kook for believing that teachers should be allowed to arm themselves (even if you are dead wrong), because this will never be allowed in our country. Just look to my previous Wussification of America post. Do you think the mothers who won't let their kids bob for apples because it might traumatize them would let their kids' teachers arm themselves?

Good Day to You, Sir


nebraska girl said...

Oh my goodness you crazy man! Ok, now that the sarcasm is out of my system, I have to say that I totally agree with you. Why people fight so hard against others lawfully owning and using guns is beyond me. Gun control does nothing to stop the criminal element, they don't follow laws anyway...that's why they're criminals. If they know their potential victim may be armed, they may think twice before they commit that crime.

t said...

I agree with you to a certain degree. If you could guarantee that all teachers and administrators that were allowed to arm themselves were responsible and levelheaded in a crisis, then I would say go for it. But inevitably, there would be that instance where a student got hold of a gun that was brought to the school by an authority figure and ended up killing someone with it. Then who do you think would be to blame? Not the student but the teacher, principle, administrator, etc. who brought the gun on campus.

I do think that something more needs to be done to keep our children safe while at school, but I don’t know what short of installing metal detectors and guards at all schools. Even closing all campuses and locking all the doors doesn’t seem to do any good.

It’s frightening and exasperating for parents. You just get to the point where you throw your hands up in the air and say, “hell, I don’t know what to do except pray to God it’s not my child”.

I do know that watching these stories on the news makes me sick to my stomach. The randomness of it is the most frightening thing of all.

George said...

They do it here: http://kmdi.utoronto.ca/jeremy/israel/israel-Images/25.jpg