Like many people reading this I know quite a few people who are currently teachers or were at some point. A high-stress, vastly underpaid (and underappreciated) profession, year after year teachers are burdened with more and more responsibilities that, let’s face it, in many instances the parents should actually be taking care of.
Over the last few years I’ve asked a couple dozen teachers if they think bringing guns into the classroom would be a good idea and I’ve had exactly one say it would be. The overwhelming majority of the feedback I’ve received concerning this asinine idea ranges from teachers saying they’d quit or retire if guns were brought into classrooms, while others have simply said it’s not their jobs to be “armed protectors” — they’re educators.
The bottom line is, wanting to arm teachers to “deter mass shootings” is one of the dumbest ideas in the history of dumb ideas — which is why Donald Trump supports it. You have to be a moron to think a good way to “prevent or deter” school shootings is by bringing guns into school and arming teachers.
For starters, whose responsibility would it be to keep track of the gun? Are we then going to hold teachers responsible if a student somehow gains access to it? And if so, what teacher is going to want to risk the possibility of severe criminal charges being brought against them because a student gained access to a gun that should have never been brought into school in the first place?
Then let’s say a shooting does take place but teachers choose not to engage the shooter — just like we’re finding out happened with the armed deputy at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School who decided to take cover “behind a concrete column leading to a stairwell” in the school parking lot instead of trying to take down the gunman. That was an armed, trained sheriff’s deputy’s reaction, and we’re talking about school teachers engaging with a gunman. Are we then going to charge them with a crime, or fire them, simply because in the midst of terrifying chaos a school teacher didn’t feel comfortable engaging in a firefight with a mass shooter?
On the flip side of that, what if they do decide to open fire on an active shooter, miss, and accidentally kill an innocent student or even several — what then? Are they then charged with manslaughter or some other crime? According to one analysis, between 1998 and 2006, the average hit rate for the NYPD during gunfights was 18 percent. Nationwide it’s not much better, with varying figures anywhere from 20-40 percent over the years. Are we expecting these teachers to have a better hit rate in a gunfight than trained police officers?
Then there’s the issue with law enforcement correctly identifying an active shooter. If SWAT shows up to the scene of an active shooting to a school filled with armed teachers, how are they going to know who is or isn’t the threat? In a chaotic situation where every split second counts, a police officer having to decide, “Is this a teacher with a gun or the active shooter” could be the difference between the life and death of an innocent person.
What if a teacher loses a gun that never turns up but then is later discovered to have been involved in a murder. Do you fire the teacher for losing the gun then later charge them with a crime?
Say a shooter comes to a school armed with only one weapon, kills a couple of teachers, then takes their guns. Now you just helped to further arm a shooter. At that point are we going to allow the families of victims to sue the schools, local governments, state governments, or whoever else pushed for guns to be allowed in schools for wrongful death for helping arm a killer?
If you’re someone who backs this idea and the idea of training teachers, then do you also support a drastic increase in pay? Because I can assure you, if you’re going to require teachers to be part-time armed protectors of students, they damn sure deserve a lot more than they’re being paid right now.
What if some teachers simply refuse to allow guns in their classrooms, do you fire them? Or what if many quit (which they will) even if only certain teachers are allowed to have weapons? What are these advocates prepared to do about a nationwide teacher shortage that would hit this country if this idea were ever made into a reality?
The list goes on and on.
Teachers are educators. They’re not cops, bodyguards, or trained security — they’re teachers. It’s not only absurd, it’s flat-out disgusting that these gun-loving nuts are so obsessed with their guns that they would rather arm teachers than simply admit that weapons of war — whether or not they think they’re “cool” — have no place within a normal society.
History will look back in utter disbelief that there was a time in this country when people were ignorant enough to buy into this radical, pro-gun obsessive propaganda driven by fools who have the nerve to say, with a straight face, that guns have nothing to do with gun violence.