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Teachers in an Arkansas Private School Are Armed and Ready

Teachers in an Arkansas Private School Are Armed and Ready

Written by Annie-Rose Strasser

A school in Arkansas wants any potential shooters to know: Its teachers are armed and ready for a showdown.

Since the Arkansas Christian Academy is a private school, it is not subject to the rules for public schools in the state that prevent teachers from carrying firearms. To that end, the school has between one and seven staff members carrying a weapon on any given day, according to Pastor Perry Black, who this week posted signs that say: “Staff is armed and trained. Any attempt to harm children will be met with deadly force.”

Credit: Reddit user Jmillerdude

Black also professed to having armed guards outside of his Sunday church services. “We reserve our right as American citizens and as Christians to protect the children on our campus,” Black told KARK.

The practice of arming teachers has come into sharp relief since the horrific shooting in Newtown, Connecticut, last December. In the eight months since the shooting, schools around the country have moved to encourage or require teachers (and sometimes students) to carry firearms. Another in Arkansas decided last month it would allow 20 teachers to carry firearms in school (although the state’s attorney general tossed cold water on this plan), and an ‘Armed Teacher Training Program‘ has swept the country, with the aim of teaching teachers how to carefully use weapons in the classroom.

But serious questions persist about the wisdom of arming teachers. Even trained police have a track record of mistakenly firing on civilians in standoff situations, raising concerns about whether a teacher in a roomful of children could be any more equipped to deal with a crazed gunman. What’s more, it might not be in the interest of a school to let its staff carry deadly weapons; in Kansas, a school that armed its teachers was denied coverage by major insurers, who deemed the armed teachers too great of a risk.

This post was originally published in ThinkProgress.

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Photo Credit: Thinkstock

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9:19PM PST on Dec 25, 2013

outrageous

8:14AM PDT on Oct 30, 2013

Some excellent work is being done regarding violence ... which has its importance here ...

Gary Slutkin: Let's treat violence like a contagious disease

http://www.ted.com/talks/gary_slutkin_let_s_treat_violence_like_a_contagious_disease.html

Backed up with information on where it is being done, and the successes achieved.

Very, very, much worth a look.

11:18AM PDT on Sep 2, 2013

So as not to "offend" a sensitive soul, I'll not name names here.

We have person A opining:
"I'd rather some trained, qualified teachers w/access to some secured but accessible guns than have fences & armed police running around all over. The idea seems to be to get kids used to it. We're closer to a police state than ever"

Yet the same person A claims to be in "especial" agreement with the following statement from another poster:
"We need a solution that doesn’t see children ending up the victims of the cure."

Does anybody see the problem with this reasoning? Because the only way that particular line of thinking works is if school children would never end up being the victims of those guns that the teachers would be keeping at school. So just WHO is willing to reject common sense and reality to say it is impossible that whether by accident, inattentiveness, mischeif by others, inadvertant use, purposeful misbehavior on the teachers' part, etc. etc. etc, surely at some point some students WILL BE VICTIMS OF THESE GUNS?!!

And, just to top-off the nonsense, under what possible motive would that same person A make the strained claim that the professional presence of police and the common sense of fences for protection at schools are proof of an ever encroaching police state, all enabled by a "left leaning media"? The rightwing inanity buggars the mind!

11:13AM PDT on Aug 31, 2013

True, Robby. Those who aren't comfortable with guns shouldn't get within touching distance of a gun - that's a recipe for disaster. Anyone who's willing to think about the matter, decide that he/she is willing to use deadly force against an attacker if necessary, is willing to learn how to use a gun properly, is willing to learn when NOT to pull a gun on someone, is emotionally capable of accepting the emotional fallout that results from killing an aggressor, is willing to undergo regular target shooting practice on a range, is willing to undergo safety training on a regular basis, is willing, in short, to accept the responsibilities of gun use and ownership as well as the privileges - that person is capable of being a responsible gun owner/user. Many can't do that - which is fine. Others can - and deserve to exercise that right (at least in the U.S., it's a right).

I, for example, am perfectly comfortable with having a shotgun in my own home (a fairly uncomplicated matter - break into my home without first shouting "Birmingham Police" or "Federal Agent", and I'm entitled to assume you mean me harm - and I'm therefore entitled to shoot you, and I will). I'm not as certain about my ability to judge situations in which I might use a handgun outside of my home. Therefore, I don't carry a handgun at the present time, but only keep a shotgun at home for protection.

It's an individual matter.

10:56AM PDT on Aug 31, 2013

Lindsey. Excellent post- I agree completely! And yes, part of the prob is the left leaning media's blown these infrequent occurrences out of proportion. Had the last few shootings occurred >30yrs ago it'd have been different. PLUS, our world population is ~7B. In 1980, it was ~4B. So it stands to reason (all other factors equal) there'd be ~75% MORE such shootings than then. And w/the media able to report worldwide in seconds, sometimes live(!), it gets around more. But I think it's important to note several things:

1- teachers should not be required to have them- just like you said "...it needs to be decided on an individual basis..." So ONLY those who feel comfortable w/guns should have them. Some people do NOT like to, &/or are scared of, shooting. Usually these are people who've never shot, but there are plenty who've tried it & it's just NOT for them! No one should be forced as it would help no one! Anyway, I don't think ANY school would EVER require that a teacher be qualified & carry a gun to school.

2- IMO, they shouldn't be WORN by teachers for obvious possibility of kids getting them, etc. I also think it'd be a distraction. It's near impossible to conceal-carry, daily, w/out anyone EVER noticing at some point. Not sure it's more distracting than security gates, fences, cameras, metal detectors, etc, though, but still. A secure, locked container, easy to access, ONLY for qualified teachers!

9:10AM PDT on Aug 31, 2013

Most schools aren't going to be attacked by gunmen or anyone else. Unfortunately the rare instance of outsiders attacking students gets far too much press and convinces many that the problem is endemic, when it isn't.

I have no problem with some teachers carrying guns (since law-abiding citizens being armed certainly is a deterrent to criminals) - IF they can prove they have been trained well in the use of firearms and have passed (on an ongoing basis) safety classes in using guns properly. Many (perhaps most), however, have no business whatsoever holding a gun in their hands (true of many non-teachers as well). The issue needs to be decided on an individual basis. Guns are useful, often essential things - but in the wrong hands they're dangerous.

1:35AM PDT on Aug 31, 2013

Paul- excellent post! I especially agree with:
"Here in Australia I have seen fences go up around schools over the years...But I can’t help but think what it means to be a kid locked up behind the fence.When I was a kid...we were part of the community, in a good way, because of it. We need a solution that doesn’t see children ending up the victims of the cure."

For years, we've seen the same in the US. I too think it perpetuates the problem. They're basically institutionalizing kids & I don't see it helping stop "terrorism." Terrorism's being used as a scare tactic- much the same as communism during our McCarthy era. Now we've got the power hungry TSA & some people actually say they'll give up some freedom for safety- makes me embarrassed to be American. Part of the issue is, we've simply had it too good, too long. Many don't think a crazy dictator could come to power. But we only have 5% of the world's population, so yes, it COULD happen. And guns have never been a more touchy subject, but our media leans left, so you rarely see the good things guns have done in regards to defense- often w/out a shot being fired. that's not to say any teacher could stop an attacker before a single casualty, but they'd have a chance & I'd rather some trained, qualified teachers w/access to some secured but accessible guns than have fences & armed police running around all over. The idea seems to be to get kids used to it. We're closer to a police state than ever

7:57PM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

Hm.

6:47PM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

Angela R. “any means necessary to protect the children.” I hope you consider this further as you have entered onto the broader picture.

We need a negotiated response to threat as many times we cause the ignition of these crazy actions, ether personally, as in bullying, or as a society; and also because others will be reading from that same play book … thinking they are protecting “their” children; the cry of the terrorist.

Here in Australia I have seen fences go up around schools over the years. Our problem to date is more that odd people wander onto the property and we keep them out this way. But I can’t help but think what it means to be a kid locked up behind the fence. When I was a kid the schools were open and we were part of the community, in a good way, because of it. We need a solution that doesn’t see children ending up the victims of the cure.

I suppose this school will show the way. If they successfully defend the school it will mean one thing, and if they don't, another. Either way they are a seed that will grow into the future.

6:37PM PDT on Aug 29, 2013

Robby K. I note the quotes … “"(Paul M.) You do worship "political correctness/politeness" above all else, no matter how many apologist web references you make."

-I haven't seen him apologize to you or anyone else- where are these "web references?" And PC is a leftwing thing.
Thank you for your input. I think you captured my point well; I strive for clarity.

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