To Carry, Or Not To Carry
Many question the ability for any teacher to have a gun concealed, or in plain view. The question really is, can you see multiple kids being gunned down for no reason, and if you’re in that school, you likely remain mercilessly helpless?
But the answer lies in only allowing the most qualified teachers to ‘pack,’ whether in-the-open, or concealed. Next, one has to be able to determine how qualified faculty members are. Not many in schools are able.
Research For School Shootings
Even for all major public shootings, authors from Harvard School of Public Health and Northeastern University, have detailed independent research, based on the mass shootings data collected and published since 2012. Harvard Research delineates how the rate of mass shootings has tripled since 2011. To bring this very scary situation to the forefront of reality, let’s briefly recap the most vicious scenarios occurring over the last 14 years. The List of the Deadliest U.S. Shootings is below:
Stockton Schoolyard – (Cleveland School massacre); Jan 1989 at Cleveland Elementary School in Stockton, California. The gunman, Patrick Purdy, with a long criminal history, shot and killed 5 schoolchildren, and wounded 29 others and one teacher, before committing suicide. Luby’s Massacre – Killeen, Texas, 1991, George Pierre Hennard shot 23 dead and wounded another 20. It bore a striking resemblance to the carnage of Robin Williams’ movie ‘The Fisher King.’ Police found that movie ticket in Hennard’s belongings. Columbine – high school massacre, April 1999, at Columbine High School in Colorado. With shootings, the attack involved a fire bomb, propane tanks as bombs, 99 explosive devices, and bombs rigged in cars. Two seniors, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, murdered 12 students and one teacher. They injured 21 additional people. Three others were also injured. The murderers then committed suicide. Virginia Tech – (Virginia Tech massacre); April 2007 in Blacksburg, Virginia. Seung-Hui Cho, a senior, shot and killed 32 people, and wounded 17 others, before committing suicide. Fort Hood – Nov 2009; Army psychiatrist Nidal Hassan shot/killed 13 soldiers, deployed for Iraq/Afghanistan. Giffords/Tucson – Jan 2011, U.S. Representative Gabrielle Giffords and eighteen victims were shot during a constituent meeting in a supermarket parking lot in Casas Adobes, Arizona, in Tucson metropolitan area. Six people died. Giffords – the target – represented Arizona’s 8th congressional district. She was shot through the head at point-blank range. Doctors initially described her medical condition as “critical,” but she survived. Aurora – July 2012, a mass shooting occurred inside of a Century movie theater in Aurora, Colorado. The gunman, James Eagan Holmes, released tear gas grenades and shot into the audience with multiple firearms, killing 12 people and injuring 70 others. Newtown – The Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting occurred in December 2012, in Newtown, Connecticut, when 20-year-old Adam Lanza fatally shot 20 children and 6 staff members. Prior to driving to the school, Lanza shot and killed his mother. Lanza committed suicide by shooting himself in the head. DC Navy Yard – The Washington Navy Yard shooting Sept 2013, when gunman Aaron Alexis fatally shot twelve people and injured three others at the headquarters of the Naval Sea Systems Command (NAVSEA).
Finding A Qualified Holder
Summing these supposed worst-case scenarios in a nutshell, four involved innocent schoolchildren simply being taught at school, and the rest involved delusional individuals at various locations with grudges not completely understood. It can be assumed the schoolchildren were certainly not armed (nor the teachers), the moviegoers, nor the Navy Yard personnel who were mainly shipbuilders. At Fort Hood, Hassan supposedly did Allah’s work. This list is only the beginning of an earth-shattering trend of worldwide shootings by serious malcontents.
If some, or even one, of these victims was carrying a concealed gun, the carnage would have been significantly less in each case. Defense of the victims would be a highly attributable quality, especially for the children gunned down. Of course, not every teacher is qualified to handle a gun. Not every military vet is really qualified in every case, even though they’ve been trained to use guns. One would think with the rash of gun attacks, especially with schools, more efforts to protect the populace would be taken. Students should not be allowed to carry, period.
It’s possible to put police in ‘plain-clothes’ with guns in various school locations. A very good option, but how many schools will actually choose this considering their wanted ‘budget cuts?’ Probably the next best option is allowing a few prescreened teachers to conceal-carry. It’s likely few students would even know this teacher was packing. Of course, knowing this possibility existed, would cause most attackers to avoid locations where the teacher might be packing.
According to Harvard Research’s statistical analysis of three decades of data, 2011 was when mass shootings started occurring more frequently. This analysis used data compiled by Mother Jones on attacks taking place in public locations, where the shooter and the victims generally were unrelated and unknown to each other. Typically, the shooter murdered four or more people. (>4 homicide victims is the threshold count for mass killings established by FBI a decade ago).
Plea For Sanity
This author is knowledgeable of at least one veteran who teaches, and is likely the most ‘gun-ready’ option for concealed-carry a school could have. Of course, this ‘option’ would have to take on the responsibility of stopping a perpetrator hell-bent on killing as many of his students as possible.