Teachers should have guns at schools
Teachers should absolutely have the right to carry a concealed firearm in school. The so-called "gun-free school" act is a travesty that is responsible for many deaths. In the Sandy Hook shootings, the school principal, Dawn Hochsprung, charged the gunman empty-handed to try and stop him. Ms. Hochsprung obviously was brave enough to confront him; she could have stopped him if only she had the tools to even the field. Teacher Victoria Soto died shielding her students with her body from the murderer. Another example of tremendous courage. Why were these courageous women denied the right to carry a means of protection for themselves and their students?
From what I know of almost all of the active shooter events in the U.S., almost all of them conclude with the shooter taking his own life the moment he is challenged by the first officer on the scene. Why not challenge him earlier? Recently, a shooter in Clackamas, Ore., was stopped when an armed civilian confronted him. Unchallenged, the shooter could have continued.
There have been several letters to this and other papers decrying the call for armed teachers. With the passing of Arizona’s concealed carry law and constitutional carry law, there were shrill predictions of blood flowing in the streets, shoot-outs over parking spaces and a return to the Wild West. This just hasn’t happened.
One recent letter in the Yuma Sun stated that the mere presence of a gun would turn a schoolteacher into a raging murderer. This is wrong and an insult to teachers. We trust our teachers to take our children eight hours a day, unsupervised, behind closed doors. Teachers and other school staff have been vetted by the school system with fingerprints and a background check. They are better educated than the majority of the population in Yuma County. If they possess the traits in common with their peers at Sandy Hook, they definitely have the wherewithal to possess a concealed firearm and use it to save themselves or their students. It is an insult to think otherwise.
Israel had the same problem. Arab terrorists were going after Israeli schoolchildren because they were easy targets. The Israelis simply armed the teachers and put a stop to the problem. Israel has moved to armed private guards, but the initial effort was made with teachers.
Clearly, the "gun-free school" act needs to be nullified. If the Arizona law enforcement community decided to simply not comply with this fallacious law, it would allow school staff to carry concealed. I would like to see our state government draft a law to allow all CCW holders to carry in schools. Further, I would like to see Yuma Police Chief John Lekan and Yuma County Sheriff Leon Wilmot offer free training in firearms handling, safety and marksmanship to any school employee in Yuma County where the intention is to carry a concealed weapon in school.