Yes! Finally we, the group opposed to arming teachers with guns win justification for siding to not arm teachers for once. The argument I want to clearly state and backup is that when you allow a teacher to carry a gun, they make mistakes and can threaten the lives of innocent children. So therefore guns need not to be carried by teachers. In the article In Utah, Teachers Can Carry Guns Into School and Not Tell Anyone, written by Zoe Schlanger the premise is about how persons in Utah that have a concealed-carry permit are allowed to carry a firearm in school without approval by school authority.
Now, one might ask themselves: What happens if this concealed gun goes off unannounced? Well, there was a case in which that occurred. “An elementary school teacher with a concealed-carry permit accidentally shot herself in the leg in the Utah school’s bathroom Thursday morning,” The Salt Lake Tribune reported. The most asinine thing about this policy is that “parents, by law, are not allowed to ask their child’s teacher if he or she is carrying a gun in the classroom.” (Schlanger, 2014). This is a terrifying game of Russian roulette as I see it, because you may have a mentally unstable teacher with the capabilities to just off a student. While the entire community and its constituents are completely anonymous that said teacher is indeed packing heat. This policy is risky and needs to be changed, at least in telling someone your armed. “82 percent of respondents thought parents should have the right to know if their child’s teacher is packing heat.” (Schlannger, 2014). If I were a parent in Utah I’d move knowing that I had no idea if the teacher that just bought a gun without training is sitting 5 feet from him/her. In closing I feel my argument to not arm teachers with guns is more justifiable given the example I provided
1. Kids will eventually find anything
Speaking from first hand experience and many can relate, when I was a young child my curiosity peaked when my mother and father would hide emblems; presents, toys, games, etc. Every child has this internal curiosity meter that makes them want to find what is hidden or out of reach. So, imagine if a group of ten year olds find out that a gun is present in their classroom: How long until it inevitably finds its way into their small anxious hands? In a research journal prepared by the Pediatrics in 2001, twenty nine groups of ten year olds were sat down in a room with partially hidden fake toy handguns and a real handgun. According to the results of the study Ken Corbett reports “Forty-eight out the sixty-four boys found the handgun. Thirty boys handled the gun. Sixteen boys pulled the trigger. Approximately half of the boys who found the gun thought it was a toy, or were unsure if it was real.” (Corbett 1). Are you shocked? Because I’m not, their young boys who are influenced by popular violent media. Collectively, these children think guns are cool and have no idea of the consequences of handguns. When todays children get their hands on a gun, most likely they understand how it operates. This possibility can be dismissed if guns are absent entirely from the reach of children. Popular toy manufacturers dont help either in separating the physical distinction of real vs fake handguns. With toy handguns looking seemingly real, a child in reach of a handgun in a school environment may just think its a toy like the one he/she already has at home. He/she may not even noticed the additional weight of the real handgun and begin to operate it like the toy he/she has. Guns should never be available to teachers, this is why we continue to stress official personnel; police and security to be authorized on school campus to patrol.
The mentality more is better doesn’t always compute when dealing with gun violence prevention in schools, and their surrounding communities for that matter. The subjective notion that having more armed profesionals outside or inside your child’s “sanctuary”of education isn’t necessarily the most logical. The reason being, schools that have the least amount of shootings also have the least amount of gun owners. Example, the state of Massachusetts has the lowest school shooting counts nationwide, in conjunction to having a trained officer present and having one of the strongest gun control policies nationwide. According to the CDC, “Massachusetts is the state with the fewest gun deaths per capita, with 233 deaths for the more than 6 million Bay State residents in 2012 — the most recent data available. Only 12.8 percent of households reported owning guns.”
Massachusetts schools elect one officer per school that is armed, given the situation the elected officer does have the authorization to defend the property and constituents. In my opinion, states need to focus primarily on tightening up gun control laws, similar to Massachusetts to help mitigate possible gun violence situations. In 1998 the state passed a state law banning semiautomatic assault weapons, which created more strict licensing rules. This led to less and less gun owners over time, resulting in a safer community for school personnel. Arming teachers may prove effective in holding off a violator, but not having them armed at all may also assist in dismissing any type of pre-existing assault with a student that wants to challenge the authority with his/her own weapon. States with the largest amount of gun owners also have the weakest gun laws; Louisiana, Mississippi, Alaska, Wyoming, and Montana. Coincidently speaking, these failing states are among the highest in gun violence. In conclusion less guns carried in schools have the potential to result in less school shooting.
There are many reasons why some may think arming a teacher in a school setting will provide more protection toward themselves and their students. The fact of the matter is that if a teacher were to be armed, would they know how to shoot a weapon in a critical situation? Last time I checked, I never heard of teachers practicing firearm techniques. The experience, accuracy, and psychology of shooting a gun at a target takes time to foster. I’m arguing against the fact that arming a teacher is safer. Lets understand the increased dangers this present to the students and teachers. Firstly, what if the teacher lost the key to the guns vault in a situation, or if a curious and determined student got a hold of it. Then we’d possibly have a child thinking the gun is a toy and an unintentional disaster can present itself. Second, what if the teacher has no prior shooting experience? Then you have the opportunity for said teacher to hurt themselves or a student in the defending process against an armed intruder. Guns aren’t easy to shoot at targets, especially when your caught off guard in a situation your not prepared to face, which most teachers are subjected to in these crisis situations. The policy of allowing teachers the permission to hold guns in a school setting in my opinion is unnecessary. We have police and security personable that are trained for situations like a school shooting. Its very easy to say, oh having a gun in the class is safer, but are you as a teacher prepared enough, skilled enough to operate a weapon in a situation quickly and appropriately to mitigate a disaster? Guns need to stay at home or on trained personnel in my opinion, not with educators.