Sandy Hook Elementary School
This article, which first ran on March 07, 2012, is the first in a series building a case for concealed carry of handguns by school staff. The murder of 20 elementary school children and seven adults in Newtown, Connecticut on December 14, 2012 renewed the usual calls for completely ineffective, feel-good measures–particularly gun control–that only inflame passions and contribute nothing to saving lives. President Obama’s emotional push for stereotypically progressive “common sense gun safety” legislation, such as requiring federal government approval of sales between relatives and friends, spectacularly failed as Congress clearly heard the American people who know better than to fall for hysterical measures that accomplish nothing.
Mr. Obama, however, has not learned. On Friday, October 1, 2015, a lone shooter killed eight students and one teacher, ranging in age from 18 to 67 at Umpqua Community College in Roseburg, Oregon. The shooter, who would want his name and photo displayed here, killed himself before he could be engaged by the police. Mr. Obama immediately spoke, admitting that he knew nothing about the incident, but demanding unspecified “common sense gun safety” legislation, and praising himself for politicizing the attack. I addressed the issue here.
As an educator, I know well the thinking of my fellow educators, many of who recoil in horror at the mere thought of a firearm on school property. As a former police officer, I know that many citizens share that reflexive response. Unfortunately, such responses spring not from reason and a sincere desire for effective action, but from emotion ill-considered philosophy, and a potentially earnest desire to “do something.” The police officer in me–always just below the surface–wants to tell those people to wake up and do what works. The educator realizes that providing an engaging opportunity to learn may be the only effective way of changing minds, and of saving lives.