More guns in schools is not the answer
Sen. Bill Nelson was recently asked by a Fox & Friends host, "Do you also think it's time to give the schools a fighting chance when these crazy former students come back to kill? And don't you think it's time to arm qualified security guards?"
Perhaps Nelson knew what the host perhaps did not. There WAS an armed security guard on campus at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School. Their paths never crossed. In fact an AR-15 is able to kill so many so fast that Nikolas Cruz was able to walk into the school, kill 17 people, and leave the school undetected as if he were any other student. It was only later that day police caught up with him off school grounds based on description. The armed security guard was there but not in the part of the school that Cruz was and had no encounter with the gunman. Further, Reuters reports that "a law enforcement officer is assigned to every school in the Broward County district. USA Today reports, "schools in the Broward district typically have one or two school resource officers, typically Broward County Sheriff deputies who are armed and always on the campus."
Being a very recent former student, Nikolas Cruz probably knew this also. It didn't stop him.
While much of America blind to this fact screams for armed guards in schools, gun advocates here in the Garden State are screaming for teachers themselves to be armed. Alexander P. Roubain who is president of the NJ Second Amendment Society says, "It's important that schools and individuals take shooting classes to learn how to be proficient with a firearm and to be able to protect themselves." He points to other states where teachers have been trained to carry firearms during the school day. "But New Jersey bans that from happening."
It's not just those with titles who feel this way. A caller to our show last week said he believed not only should New Jersey teachers be allowed to carry guns, they should be required. Think about what a ridiculous proposal that is. Take someone who has worked hard to become a professional educator, never wishing to even be around a gun, and tell this person they must carry one every day. No good is going to come from arming a person who is uncomfortable even holding one.
I have no issue with armed guards in our schools like I do with arming our teachers. Just don't delude yourself into thinking that is going to be the ultimate solution.
The belief that the answer to school gun violence is more guns is disputed in a report by the American Journal of Public Health. It shows that states with higher rates of gun ownership had disproportionately large numbers of deaths from firearm-related homicides. They further reported each time gun ownership rates in a state increase the firearm homicide rate also increases.
Is the answer to mass shootings in schools more guns in schools? Sure, if this were all a movie where everything works out in the end. Unfortunately this is real life, where a few days ago an armed guard being on campus was powerless in stopping the slaughter of 17 innocent people on the wrong end of an AR-15. The gun nut trolls probably stopped reading this article halfway through and already sent me something hateful through social media. Here's the thing they don't know. I'm not anti-gun. I enjoy going to a range. I've done it plenty. I've fired handguns, rifles and shotguns. Yet I'm reasonable enough to know that the weapons which exist today were inconceivable at the time the 2nd amendment was ratified and that the constitution is a living document capable of evolving. Remember at the time the 2nd amendment was written you were also allowed to own slaves. Remember at the time the 2nd amendment was written women were not allowed to vote. Would you cleave unto these things as well?
I am not suggesting all guns need to be confiscated and thrown into a melter. I do however know that there are certain guns designed to cause maximum carnage in mere seconds that the average person does not need. And you certainly don't need nine or ten of them. You don't hunt with them, except in school corridors or office parks or nightclubs. You can target shoot with so many other guns. Now I understand how much you love weapons like these and that they make your penis all tingly. But how many more 14 year olds need to bleed to death on classroom floors before you're going to allow that maybe, just maybe, you've been wrong on this?
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