A Common Sense Perspective On School Shootings

Posted: December 16, 2013 in Uncategorized

Last week we were once again confronted by the sad reality that, despite our best efforts to pretend otherwise, evil exists. I can’t help but find it ironic that the latest attempted mass shooting has all but disappeared from the media spotlight. Don’t get me wrong, I’m personally glad the media isn’t salivating over this story and blasting the shooter’s picture 24 hours a day like they have in the past. But why? Why is the media not covering it like they have other school shootings?

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Part of the reason is probably because the shooter was a self-proclaimed pro gun-control socialist (imagine the coverage had he been a pro-gun tea party advocate or anarcho-capitalist). But I think the true reason the media is sweeping the story under the rug is because it proves beyond any argument that the NRA was right. That common sense gun owners are right. That a good guy with a gun is truly the best way to stop a bad guy with a gun. Do you remember last December (in the wake of Newtown) when the NRA called upon schools to begin placing armed guards/faculty in schools? Remember how they were ridiculed and mocked for doing so by the media?

Well here we are one year later. A psychopath armed to the teeth with a shotgun, bandolier of ammo, machete, and a backpack full of Molotov cocktails walks into a school filled with innocent children. No doubt he had plans very similar to the killer in Newtown. Why then did this not turn out like Newtown? One undeniable reason. Arapahoe High School had done what the NRA was mocked for suggesting, they had hired an armed resource officer. The armed guard (officially titled a school resource officer) responded to the shooting in 80 seconds and brought an end to what would have very likely been a repeat of Newtown. All without a single shot being fired by the resource officer. The mere presence of a gun in the school was enough to make the shooter take his own life. Cowards, as is so often demonstrated, give up in the face of resistance.

Once [the armed guard] learned of the threat, he ran — accompanied by an unarmed school security officer and two administrators — from the cafeteria to the library, Robinson said. “It’s a fairly long hallway, but the deputy sheriff got there very quickly.”

The deputy was yelling for people to get down and identified himself as a county deputy sheriff, Robinson said. “We know for a fact that the shooter knew that the deputy was in the immediate area and, while the deputy was containing the shooter, the shooter took his own life.” (source)

This issue is beyond dispute. Undebatable. There are two options when an killer enters a school. 1: Armed resistance, or 2: defenselessness. Evil people have always chosen schools to perpetrate their evil deeds, believing schools are safe havens is simply not an option. It has happened since schools were invented and will continue to happen. No thinking person can argue that armed resistance by any school faculty member (even if handled clumsily and without navy seal-like training) would be worse than simply sitting in a room and waiting. It’s wake up time. It’s time for America to put on big boy pants and confront an issue that makes us uncomfortable. There are evil people in this world who stay up at night thinking about how to harm children. Knowing that, what is your school doing to make sure your child is not a victim?

Allow me to explain what my children’s school does. You see I live in Utah, and we have a slightly different way of doing things here. In Utah, any person with a Utah concealed carry permit can carry any firearm, in an fashion (openly or concealed), onto any public school. Janitors, teachers, parents, college students, they all carry guns. It’s impossible to know how many faculty are actually carrying at a Utah school on a daily basis, but it’s more than one or two. My last year at Weber State University I asked my senior thesis class how many people were carrying a firearm at that exact moment. Three people (besides myself) raised their hands. We had 4 students in a class of 25  legally carrying firearms in that room. Now, I’m not one to speculate what I would or would not do in a mass shooting scenario, I’ve never been down that road. What  I can tell you without equivocation, however, is I would certainly choose a college class in Utah over a defenseless class at Virginia Tech any day. How about you?  If you were watching the news and heard your child’s school was locked down with a gunman on the loose, would you prefer to have a handful of armed staff in there or a group of completely unarmed teachers? The answer is obvious.

BUT WHAT IF THE TEACHERS ARE RECKLESS WITH THEIR GUNS OR AREN’T TRAINED ENOUGH AND CAUSE EVEN MORE HARM?

Great question. They aren’t reckless and they won’t cause more harm. We have over a decade of empirical data that supports my answer. We don’t need to operate in the world of hypotheticals,  we can simply look at the facts. Utah has been allowing school faculty members to carry for over 10 years. During that time there has never been a single negative incident of ANY KIND involving an armed staff member. Even more important, there has never been a shooting on any of Utah’s 2,400+ schools during that time period. Could it be that having 4 armed college students in each class serves as a deterrent to would be evil-doers?

As I noted above, it is time for America to stop operating in a world of hypotheticals and boogeyman scenarios. WE KNOW what happens when an armed security guard confronts a shooter. WE KNOW what happens when a state allows faculty to carry lawfully concealed firearms. In both circumstances lives are saved. That fact is beyond dispute. With all its Xanaxed furry, the gun control lobby cannot point to a single negative incident that has ever occurred by allowing teachers and faculty to carry firearms. We have over a decade of empirical data and millions of firearms carried onto schools each year here in Utah, and nothing bad has ever happened.

It’s time to allow teachers, faculty, and college-aged students to exercise their inalienable right to defend themselves in the places they need it most. We protect our money, our politicians and our monuments with guns. I’ll no longer tolerate being  told that protecting our children with guns is a bad idea.

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Comments
  1. Blue says:

    Excellent article. Keep up the good work!

  2. Hooray for Utah and having the sense to figure this horrible scenario out with the correct outcome! This type of horror has to stop. Our children are our most valuable assets. Oh, and don’t forget that little old ladies in Utah may also be well armed and able to hit their target. Let’s do it!

  3. Denice says:

    I wish our state was more like Utah. What a great job Utah is doing. We need more people to start understanding about guns and the law. Guns don’t kill it’s the ignorant people who have guns in their house that don’t practice gun safety. If you have someone living in your house that has mental issues and they don’t lock them up then there is a big problem. Educate educate.

  4. Randy Parker says:

    If we do not protect our children then we are negligent.At school at home at the movies in the park any and every where.The time has come to get our heads out of the sand and realize bad people want to hurt innocent people.

  5. Cody says:

    I agree with the law that would allow people to carry on public school campuses; however, I also think that this “proof” is very weak. What I mean is, they are using the fact that Utah hasn’t had any school shootings on any campus where guns are allowed since the law was passed. How many school shootings have there been up to that point in the state of Utah, BEFORE the law was passed? As far as I know there haven’t been any ever, before or after.

    I don’t think Utah would be the best example to use in this case, but I also don’t know if any other state has the necessary data to make this association.