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How Can We Stop School Gun Violence?

Children across the nation have decided to protest school violence with a mass walk out.  But what can that do?  Don’t the pictures of dead children hurt us enough?  The Sandy Hook massacre still haunts me every day as I send my own son to school.  What are our options for school safety? A national law allowing teachers to have guns may help.  They have repeatedly been the people who save our children from being human shields to getting kids out of classrooms.  They are our children’s first defense.

News abounds on the parent’s reactions to school gun violence, kids rehash their horror stories but we normally see teachers in RIP images across social media and the news.  Why?  Because they didn’t make it.  They were human shields, the people trying to confront the shooter or the person who returns to the building to see how they can help.  We are not just losing our kids, we are losing our school leaders.  They must be protected while protecting our kids.  Six states across America have laws allowing teachers to carry guns into the classroom.  We need that on a national level.  It’s not just big cities, it’s in small towns, suburbs, and affluent areas.  How can we make a law that satisfies everyone?  We can’t.  But we can’t continue to allow massacres in schools either.

They Might Still Be Alive

An FBI report found school shootings last about 3-5 minutes, so can guns in the schools help?  Sure, if every teacher had a gun that shooter could be stopped just as quickly.  Columbine didn’t last 3 minutes, nor did Virginia Tech.  Sandy Hook lasted 11 minutes where three different teachers were near the shooter or killed by the shooter.  Could it have ended differently if the teachers shot back?  Could we have cried for fewer small souls?  Sure, we could have but we didn’t.  If teacher Victoria Soto, who had heard the gunshots before the shooter entered her room could have her gun ready and aimed for the door, she may still be here today.

A student at the recent Parkland, Florida Marjory Stoneman Douglas H.S. shooting rampage watched her teacher being shot to death.  He was closing the door to protect students, but it didn’t help him.   If he had a gun, he could have prepared for the shooter instead of just closing a door.  Since when did doors stop murders especially with powerful guns?

A national law could consist of these special guidelines for teachers like some state laws:

  • Teachers would be required to have the weapon concealed from students and on-premises always;
  • Teachers would be required to take an additional 8 hours of training on gun safety especially when faced with hostile students;
  • Teachers and staff would have monthly active shooter drills to ensure they understand their need in a critical situation;
  • Active drills would require teachers to learn timing discharge of the weapon, location of shooting in the school and response procedures;
  • Teachers that hesitate to carry a gun must teach in a classroom next door to one that is carrying;
  • Teachers would need monthly counseling regarding feelings regarding as protector.  This could eliminate PTSD;
  • The true key to this successful law would be anti-bullying programs such as Illinois’s bully laws.

It’s astounding that 23 states have laws to protect victims of domestic violence from their gun-owning abusers.  Yet, we have no laws that make a significant impact in our schools.  Domestic abusers have not been the shooters in these schools.  It’s been bullied students.  If we were to stop violence in the schools all students that are bullied should be counseled as well.  Violence only begets violence.  Bullied students are further bullied by the administration that refuses to expel bullies.  Many of the school shooters from Columbine to Virginia Tech and more noted bullying from the students.  Protecting vengeance from children who have been bullied into depression and loathing could save lives.  Stop the bullying if you want your children to survive and thrive.  All children should be protected from bullies.  It’s the bullies that should be removed from the school, not the bullied.

This national type of law is expected to receive applause and degradation.  Walkouts will not cure the violence.  The only thing that will cure the violence is being prepared to help those children being harmed at school with bullying counseling and arming teachers.  It’s a two-step process that will be easier and more effective than fighting the almighty NRA.  The NRA has billions of dollars that taxpaying voters do not raise in their fight against guns.  It is people that kill people, they just use guns.  Voters helped to raise nearly $2.4 billion dollars for the 2016 presidential election but that’s not even close to what they chip in against gun laws.  The Second Amendment isn’t going to disappear nor be changed.  Americans have the right to bear arms but we can create laws that change how they bear arms and how it affects our lives.  Let’s start today.

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