Thinking and Linking by Joanne Jacobs
Do police officers make your schools safer? Los Angeles students don’t think so, reports Colorlines.
South Dakota has passed a law allowing teachers to carry guns in school.
They had police at Columbine High School. How well did that work?
On top of what George says below, the unortunate circumstances were that the police officer was on the opposite side of campus when the attack occured, when notified of an emergency by school staff no mention was made of an attack (he thought he was responding to a traffic accident), and he wasn’t wearing his prescription glasses when he engaged one of the attackers in a gun fight.
Add to this an overly-cautious police protocol (police were still gathering outside while the attackers were killing students inside) and an exceptionally detailed plan by the attackers, there wasn’t much that could be done.
I agree with you the presence of police officers would not have made any difference. Before Columbine wasn’t it police policy to treat a school invasion as a hostage situation and try to wait it out till they could negotiate surrender without any loss of life? It is my recollection that the attackers had a plan that included explosives as well as firearms and involved herding panicking students into a kill zone swept by explosives. Fortunately the bombs failed.
Another useless feel-good gesture, when the elephant in the room is the inability to involuntarily commit the mentally ill who are a danger to others, and keep them away from guns. These individuals need to be in a secured facility where they can get treatment and more importantly, do not pose a threat of imminent harm to the public. Certainly, hiring armed security at schools is better than nothing, and plenty of private schools have it. But, the Columbine, Virginia Tech and Newtown massacres were all committed by mentally ill killers, not to mention Tucson, Aurora, and others too numerous to list here. When society fails to address mental illness, the consequences are deadly.
Let qualified teachers carry concealed weapons to school. Don’t advertise who’s carrying. When the bad guy shows up, you’ve got some firepower to stop him. It’s not an original idea. They do it in Israel.
Originality’s an over-valued virtue and ensuring that teachers who are willing to accept the responsibilities attendant to carrying a concealed weapon aren’t prevented from doing so is the self-evident, if widely-ignored, solution.
The problem with security guards/cops is that the vast majority of them will spend their entire career standing around doing nothing. So this solution ensures the wasting of virtually all the funding on that standing around while simultaneously ensuring that when the need does arise years of boredom will have taken their toll on effectiveness.
Identifiable security personnel also become primary targets of any nutball since once they’re taken out the rest of the facility turns into a shooting gallery.
By contrast a school in which any of the employees might be armed is a mine field. Every adult is a potential, armed adversary which undercuts the value of the firearm the nutball possesses in asserting control.
Oh yeah, and it’d be a whole lot cheaper then security guards/cops.
I support concealed carry for teachers and others. The down side (personal danger of being in a gun related situation aside) is the post incident litigation that will invariably occur. The consequences of said litigation are potentially devastating both financially and emotionally.
I one truely thinks cops are not a good thing to have around, then remove them all and put up a sign that you are a cop free zone.
See how that works for ya!
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