Sandy Hook Elementary School Shooting: Arm The Teachers

The Sandy Hook elementary school shooting has the nation mourning together. But politics has already reared its ugly head as some people have demanded further gun control measures based upon this tragedy, with the emphasis being toward an eventual gun ban. On the other end of the political spectrum you have Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, who believes we should arm the teachers.

According to CBS, the known facts in this case, which may change as time progresses, are that 27 or more people have been murdered, including 18 defenseless children, in the Connecticut elementary school. The potential usage of semi-automatic weapons by the shooter has left many wondering if something more could not be done to make America more safe.

On one side you have Liberals and Progressives saying that most, if not all, types of guns should be outright banned to protect the children. On the other side you have Conservatives and the NRA claiming 2nd amendment rights means that gun ownership should never be restricted in any form. They also point out that gun ownership was just as high in America’s past yet school shootings are more recent, so we have a societal problem and not a gun problem.

In the middle you have moderates who desire that some form of gun reform take place instead of an outright gun ban. This writer thinks that a high level Department of Defense-style background check should be required of purchasers wanting assault weapons, with investigators looking for issues or mental illnesses with anyone who might have or get access to the weapons. Any assault weapon owners would be required to take any safety precautions recommended by investigators. Of course, this plan has drawbacks since who gets to decide what is considered a “mental illness” in the case of guns? Who defines what is considered an “assault” weapon? Will precautions be extended to make gun ownership almost pointless? Such laws have the potential for becoming an effective gun ban over time.

According to Gawker, Larry Pratt is the executive director of Gun Owners of America (GOA) and he has a slightly different solution:

“Gun control supporters have the blood of little children on their hands. Federal and state laws combined to insure that no teacher, no administrator, no adult had a gun at the Newtown school where the children were murdered. This tragedy underscores the urgency of getting rid of gun bans in school zones. The only thing accomplished by gun free zones is to insure that mass murderers can slay more before they are finally confronted by someone with a gun.”

Larry Pratt has been defending gun owners for 30 years, Gun Owners of America lobbying in Washington. GOA’s work includes providing legal assistance to those involved in lawsuits with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, the federal firearms law enforcement agency. GOA’s efforts must be paying off since Michigan passed a law allowing concealed carry in schools, child-care centers, churches, and large entertainment venues.

Pratt’s idea to arm the teachers is popular on the internet. According to USA Today, in the past Republicans like Frank Lasee have attempted to get this idea accepted in America:

“To make our schools safe for our students to learn, all options should be on the table. Israel and Thailand have well-trained teachers carrying weapons and keeping their children safe from harm. It can work in Wisconsin.”

Some schools already have armed police assigned to watching the school grounds each day. This step would go one further, allowing the teachers to defend the students.

Do you agree that we should arm the teachers as a response to the Sandy Hook elementary school shooting in Connecticut?