Armed School Staff are the Last Responders


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By Rob Morse. March 7th, 2018, 2018
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Murderers attacked our schools. That has been in the news and on our minds. Who are the first responders and who are the last responders? We'd like to think that the police will arrive to save us. Unfortunately, that isn't how crime and public violence works. The criminal is almost always gone when the police arrive minutes after we call. In cases of public violence, the murderer is stopped most of the time by people who are on scene when the attack starts..or the murderer commits suicide before the police arrive to physically stop him. So who is the first responder that will stop the attack?

What about parents? What about enforcement..and judges? They are usually involved well before the problem arrives at the classroom door. Parents raise children who can control their own behavior. Sometimes that fails. Then, concerned parents hope that therapy will help their child. We contact social workers when the family breaks down. Criminals and mass murders usually have a violent history. The police are usually the next resort when individuals won't govern their own behavior. We want the courts to protect us from criminals and the mentally ill who are a danger to others. That only works some of the time. Sometimes we have advance notice that a person can turn violent. In the case of the murderer in Parkland, Florida, even the Federal Bureau of Investigation was involved..and failed. We saw deputies arrive at the Parkland high school and wait for the murderer to get tired of killing.

Do guns belong in our schools? Does a first aid kit? Does a fire extinguisher? The people who want every teacher disarmed say the problem of violence and injury shouldn't exist at school. Evidence shows us they are wrong. Violence comes to school despite the layers of things we've done to prevent it. That leaves school staff as the last responders, not the first. Everyone else had a chance to keep violence out of our schools. That works most of the time. Sometimes it doesn't. Do we need armed staff in our schools? Not usually, but we're not talking about a usual event.

What should we do when a murderer comes to a school? I think we should do the same thing we do when a murderer comes to our home. We do everything we can to keep the murderer outside. We defend our family any way we can if the murderer breaks in.

The first thing we do when violence comes is to call a good guy with a gun. How many students should we sacrifice while we wait for help to arrive from outside? I say none. Not one more student should die because we were waiting for emergency responders. If volunteer teachers want to take training and go armed to defend students then I say thank you.

That is how many of us protect our families at home. Almost 20 million of us have the legal permit to carry concealed in public. Suddenly it is a novel idea to have armed defenders at our school who are not in uniform. We've been doing that for years outside of schools. In fact, we've been doing it for years inside schools as well (and here.)


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