President Donald Trump and Wayne LaPierre think that the solution to school shootings is to arm the teachers. As LaPierre says, the only thing that will keep out bad guys with guns is good people with guns. This argument is deeply flawed in multiple ways.
First, most school shooters are troubled enough that they know they are going to die. Guns won’t stop them if that’s part of their plan.
Second, do good people with guns really stop shooters? If so, how do we explain Fort Hood in 2009 where 13 were killed and 32 wounded by a shooter. Or the Washington Navy Yard where 12 were shot down in 2013? If only our military bases were better armed.
And let’s not forget that there was an armed guard inside Columbine. The guard certainly saved lives, but it didn’t stop Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold from stepping into that school and killing. There was an armed deputy at Parkland who was unwilling to act when the chips were down. That deputy was trained specifically to take action. It’s naive to think teachers would be better trained and able than a deputy.
I agree that safety should be our priority for our students, but we need to address the sources of the problem, and not be naive to think we can make a school a fortress. Teachers already fill multiple crucial roles in our children’s’ lives. Let’s not force them to be gun-wielding security guards as well.