Missouri Bill Wants Parents To Inform School If They Own Guns [Op-Ed]
COMMENTARY | Missouri Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal has inked a proposal which would require parents to inform their child’s school if they own guns. The controversial topic has inflamed passions on both sides of the gun control argument. Although it is still legal to own a gun in America, law abiding citizens being treated like criminals simply for supporting their Second Amendment rights.
Chapelle-Nadal’s misguided approach to protecting children is yet another in a series of knee-jerk reactions to the horrific tragedy in Newtown. The Democrat believes that parents who own guns should inform the school of not just ownership but storage habits. No one would advocate for carelessly leaving guns around the house, but nanny state proposals by liberals must be thwarted.
The Missouri lawmaker also feels that parents who do not store guns safely should be held accountable, KFVS 12 News notes. Does this mean that elementary school principals will now be doing home inspections to check on weapons caches and storage? Perhaps merely owning a gun now constitutes probable cause to search a home.
I worked in a school district for almost a decade. We had no idea which students had gun-toting parents. We did however know which kids were living in a home where drugs were used. We also knew which students had parents who spent more money (often a taxpayer funded monthly check) on cigarettes and booze than they did food. It was also not uncommon for students to talk about an emotionally charged home environment where a revolving door of a single parent’s significant others made them uncomfortable.
Talking to those parents about how what happens at home is impacting their child’s education is an uncomfortable yet important task. Unfortunately, to initiate such a conversation, the parents would actually have to show up at a conference. For children’s services to intervene, some documented type of abuse of neglect had to occur first. Even if a teacher was able to obtain enough proof for a home inspection, the children eventually wound up back inside the same home a few months later.
Maria Chappelle-Nadal had this to say during a WTSP interview:
“I am not trying to take away the gun rights of any parents or any other citizens I believe in the Second Amendment. It encourages parents to make sure they store their guns safely in their home, it also gives the school districts the opportunity to help encourage gun safety in the community and in the household.”
If the Missouri proposal gains momentum and actually becomes law, gun owning parents could be subjected to an extreme invasion of privacy. Do we truly want to live in a society where keeping a gun to protect your family is worthy of a home visit but neglecting to buy your child a winter coat so you can have beer money does not?
Do you think the Missouri proposal would do anything to prevent another Newtown tragedy?