• Sat, Dec 22 2012

Armed Guards In Schools Isn’t A New Idea – Or A Successful One

shutterstock_109906310There was a highly anticipated press conference yesterday. It was one that involved no questions from the press – but who pays attention to the little details anymore, anyway? Still, everyone was waiting to hear the NRA’s response to the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Instead of fielding questions from the press, the NRA took the opportunity to push their pro-gun agenda, and offer solutions for the increasing amount of mass shootings we are seeing in schools. Their solution? More guns in schools, of course. More guns equals less violence. That makes total sense. From a transcript of  Wayne LaPierre’s statements yesterday:

You know, five years ago after the Virginia Tech tragedy, when I said we should put armed security in every school, the media called me crazy. But what if — what if when Adam Lanza started shooting his way into Sandy Hook Elementary School last Friday, he’d been confronted by qualified armed security? Will you at least admit it’s possible that 26 little kids, that 26 innocent lives might have been spared that day? Is it so important to you (inaudible) would rather continue to risk the alternative? Is the press and the political class here in Washington D.C. so consumed by fear and hatred of the NRA and American gun owners, that you’re willing to accept the world, where real resistance to evil monsters is alone, unarmed school principal left to surrender her life, her life, to shield those children in her care.

Nice argument, only it doesn’t make any sense at all and has also been proven to be totally ineffective. Columbine had an armed guard. Virginia Tech had their own police department. Fort Hood was a military base. Somehow, the guns present in these locations did nothing to stop the violence.

Okay, I’ll play along. “What if” Adam Lanza had been confronted by “qualified armed security?” Do you really think someone armed with semi-automatic rifles, on a mission and ready to shoot to kill could be stopped by a security guard carrying a handgun, taken unawares? I hate to even make this argument, because next thing you know the NRA will be pushing for guards toting semi-automatic weapons in schools. But the thought of an armed security guard being able to do anything to stop someone as armed and ready as Lanza was is ridiculous and unfair.

“I call on Congress today to act immediately, to appropriate whatever is necessary to put armed police officers in every school — and to do it now, to make sure that blanket of safety is in place when our children return to school in January,” said La Pierre.

“Blanket of safety” my ass. I definitely would not feel safe sending my child to a school were anyone was armed. From the Huffington Post:

In 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold killed 15 people and wounded 23 more at Columbine High School. The destruction occurred despite the fact that there was an armed security officer at the school and another one nearby — exactly what LaPierre argued on Friday was the answer to stopping “a bad guy with a gun.”

I don’t think anyone has the definitive answer on how to reverse the tragic effects American gun culture has on our society as a whole. But getting assault weapons out of retail circulation is certainly a more logical strategy than placing an armed guard in every school.

Who needs logic, though? Definitely not the NRA.

(photo: wellphoto/ Shutterstock.com)

You can reach this post's author, Maria Guido, on twitter.
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  • Mike O’Reilly

    I hate to be a jerk, because I’ve been making the same argument as you and mostly agree with you. But handguns are ALSO semi automatic. I suggest editng the article to be clear — ‘semi-automatic rifles’ or whatever. There is a lot of confusion in this controversy caused by mistakes with terminology.

    • http://twitter.com/mariaguido Guerrilla Mom

      You’re not a jerk – you’re just more knowledgeable about guns than I am. Will change – thank you.

  • Michelle

    The two resource officers at my school (a very nice county school) are armed at all times and are in full uniform. I am very thankful for their presence and the dedication they show the school. I fully understand that they probably can’t stop someone hell bent on killing but I also think it’s silly for you to say that you wouldn’t feel safe if your child went to a school where anyone was armed. The officers at my school certainly have my trust and respect for everything they do for the kids.

  • Andrea

    Personally, I rather my sons wouldn’t go to school in a prison. This makes me the minority in this country, but I don’t want MORE guns in schools, I want LESS guns in the hands of deranged lunatics on the streets.

  • Smince

    The Jefferson County Sheriff’s deputy (Neil Gardner) assigned to Columbine did in fact engage the shooters, and was publicly credited with saving dozens of lives that day. Read the Jefferson County Sheriff’s office own timeline of the events. http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/2000/columbine.cd/Pages/NARRATIVE.Time.Line.htm