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More Guns in Our Schools…Really?

More Guns in Our Schools…Really?

Last week, the nation (strike that, the world) was left heartbroken after the senseless massacre that happened in Newtown, Connecticut – an act that left 28 people dead; most of them children. Within minutes after the news hit, an outraged and saddened population began howling for some real form of gun control to be enacted. This was nothing new, as there have exited a vocal majority asking, and sometimes yelling, for true gun law reforms to protect children and the general population. Usually their voices become louder once some horrific incident like this captures the public’s attention, but then things die down once citizens and legislators realize that the gun lobby is far more powerful than ever thought. And the main face of that lobby comes in the form of the National Rifle Association (NRA) an organization dedicated to protecting the 2nd amendment rights of gun owners.

Now, after a week of pregnant silence, the NRA has come forward with their official reaction and statement…and it is not so pretty. The gist of it is to appoint armed guards at every school as the best means to protect a vulnerable student population. Instead of reading the tealeaves and seeing this as a watershed event to diminish the number of firearms out there, the NRA has interpreted this as a call to arms. Wayne LaPierre, the group’s executive vice president, placed the blame on everything from violent video games to the mentally ill, but maintained that having a suitably armed populace as an effective means to curb violence. Gun-free school zones identified by signs, he said, “tell every insane killer in America that schools are the safest place to effect maximum mayhem with minimum risk.” LaPierre went on to say, referring to bringing more armed protection into schools, that “It’s not just our duty to protect them, it’s our right to protect them.”

Maybe it is the NRA’s attempt to alienate everyone except the truly, bat-shirt crazy, but I can’t help but feel this assessment goes beyond tone deaf. It is immeasurably, and intolerably, offensive. Are more guns in our schools really the way to go? Would armed guards really deter someone who is at a psychological breaking point and armed to the teeth? Thoughts?

Discussing School Shootings with Kids

Read more: Children, Family, Healthy Schools, Parenting at the Crossroads, Teens,

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Eric Steinman

Eric Steinman is a freelance writer based in Rhinebeck, NY. He regularly writes about food, music, art, architecture, and culture and is a regular contributor to Bon Appétit among other publications.


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5:28PM PST on Jan 14, 2013

Is it the US' morbid take on population control?

6:18PM PST on Jan 1, 2013

the armed guard at Columbine wasn't much help

12:47PM PST on Jan 1, 2013

Tiffany T, there are armed officers in Nashville public schools. There are also thefts, beat downs and bullying.

A gun won't stop a psychotic break and could help one along.

11:13PM PST on Dec 28, 2012

Police presence in schools would deter young psychopath/ psychotic break individuals from carrying out plans. Although It could not be just one or two guards, so it is unrealistic. Now we have people attacking first responders, this country is spitting at the seams

4:44PM PST on Dec 27, 2012

An anonymous comment was posted and also send to me re: Eric S.

To the anonymous blow hard, let's have your name before you pounce on someone else. As to your comment you can go deeper into the darkness to find something to say about idealization of guns, but that recent comment about Eric is pretty low, a juvenile's playground comment without substance or intelligence.

What is to say the bad guy with the high volume gun would not have blown away your so-called "good guy?" You and the NRA are saying school teachers and principals must have extraordinary courage to be tasked with using guns in schools to thwart one or more
shooters with unknown types and numbers of guns they might bring with them. As far as I know only trained cops and military personnel are hired and paid to have that kind of courage and when they are put in deadly fired situations mostly they actually have some idea what they will be facing. Your half brained idea would probably get more school personnel killed or wounded.

Did you stop to think if an armed school employee did challenge a shooter and lost, that it might make him more angry and more determined to kill evermore kids and teachers.

1:32PM PST on Dec 27, 2012

@Amber M, also the previous posters were referring to where mass shootings occur in the *US* - not in other countries. Any premises with signage to the effect of "all guns are banned herein" is officially a gun-free zone (of course, criminals tend to ignore such signs).

1:30PM PST on Dec 27, 2012

@Amber M, please do some research. UK does *NOT* have a near total ban on guns. They have a near total ban on handguns. Bolt or semi-automatic longarms (rifles, shotguns, etc) are perfectly legal to buy/own (you do need a permit which is easy to get).

11:19AM PST on Dec 27, 2012

John K: Please stay on topic. The discussion is about guns in our schools. Not bombs.

10:47AM PST on Dec 27, 2012

So all of you are convinced we have a gun problem, not a people problem? These psychopaths are going to figure out a way to kill people, whether they get access to guns or not. Taking guns away from law abidding citizens isn't the answer. If it's Guns that are the problem, then please, explain the Oklahoma City bombing. He didn't use guns.

10:38AM PST on Dec 27, 2012

John K,: HOW MANY mass shootings have there been in schools in the UK and Japan? I haven't HEARD of ANY and yet, they both have a NEAR TOTAL GUN BAN.... .

PLEASE explain HOW such a thing is possible since you say "It should be of interest to note that these horrendous acts of violence tend to occur where firearms are strictly forbidden."

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Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

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