Given the fact that I haven’t been here in about a year, I know that there’s a lot I want to catch you up on. A lot has happened with our family.
However, a lot has happened in the US as well (what an understatement) that I wanted to say something about first because I’m tired of the rhetoric that’s inundating the mainstream media.
Ever since a shooting at an elementary school in Texas in late May (and NOT before because the media only cares when the event is truly horrific), there’s been a LOT of talk about guns (because ONLY guns are the problem >> sarcasm) and how “easy” it is to obtain them (>> it’s not).
I mean let’s conveniently forget about the guy who shot up a church also in Texas, and as he was getting into his car to shoot up another church, he was stopped by someone with an AR-15. (The good guy’s name is Steven Wilford. Remember that for later in this post.)
But sure, guns are still the bad guys. *Eye roll*
There are a couple of things I want to discuss on the matter and I might stop at only those two things.
Today I’ll address the first one, courtesy of popular influencer Sharon McMahon’s recent statements on that school shooting and gun regulations around schools–namely her opposition to people’s suggestion that arming teachers might help protect (more) students.
For the record, I do believe that letting those teachers who want to carry a gun or who already are concealed- or open-gun carriers should be allowed to have a gun in school as well.
They’re not wusses who’d let themselves freak out at the first sight of danger, of an invader or a shooter. They’ve taken or signed up to take the necessary training for handling such scenarios. They’d be capable and willing to participate. But this is only one idea: Limiting access to schools (incl. incorporating a single entry) is also something we think would work.
But I digress. Back to Sharon and her myths.
I refer to McMahon as an influencer because while she’s considered to be someone who knows a lot about politics and civics, on her social media accounts (namely, [at] sharonsaysso on Instagram) she also shares (commissioned) links for the products she uses and wears. Someone who cares to educate wouldn’t care to make money from the stuff she wore, but I guess when in Rome?
Recently, she shared a ten-piece thread on arming teachers in schools that I’ve been inspired to debunk here with simple common sense and a little good ol’ devil’s advocating. I have the urge to address it because like I said earlier, my husband and I have been thinking it’s ONE possible solution to the problem of school shootings, and unfortunately, her thread didn’t do her any favors in my mind.
In fact, she doesn’t paint teachers in the most positive light (though let’s face it: they haven’t helped themselves lately, either).
[Note: The bolding is mine. I added it either for emphasis or to more clearly separate her main idea from the explanation.]
Arming teachers is not the answer. In a search for solutions to the problem of children being murdered in cold blood at school, some have suggested arming teachers. Here’s why this isn’t the answer, from a longtime teacher: Slide 1/10
It can slow emergency response time, and potentially kill more people. Anyone that’s armed on a scene has to be assessed by law enforcement for potential risks. The more weapons there are, the more difficult it is for them to determine who’s a good guy and who’s a bad guy. 2/10
I don’t know what it is about American kids, but where I grew up, we had no idea what our school’s security plan was. I also don’t know why adults here must just always tell kids everything, from who they sleep with to what the adults will do in case of a shooting. Not everything benefits a kid’s brain, so maybe leave some things out?
When I found out, as an adult, that there were always armed guards at my school growing up, I was pleasantly surprised and relieved to know I was safe all along. Unlike some of the weak cops who have opted out of helping kids in need here (partly because they’re apparently not supposed to help defend them, which is completely messed up and makes you wonder why the hell the took the Oath), I know these guards would have taken bullets for our sake.
But back to knowing who’s a good guy and who’s a bad guy. If the cops know Teacher X has a gun, simple: He’s the good guy. Why overcomplicate this? (And besides, wouldn’t security camera footage corroborate Teacher X being the good guy?) Why take forever to analyze the situation when there are kids being shot and time is of the essence? What if a teacher already took care of the bad guy: What more is there for teachers to analyze?
Teachers would become targets for gun seekers. If would-be shooters know a teacher is carrying, they could plan to assault them and steal their weapon. Teachers cannot be hyper vigilant about securing their weapon and classroom, and simultaneously be caring and empathetic. 3/10
Yes, they can be. Gun-owning parents can, so why can’t teachers? Are you saying kids are better off NOT in schools (<< true) because those in charge of their care aren’t able to actually care for them? So you expect parents to be OK with teachers providing “transition closets” and talking to kids about their sex lives… but God forbid those same parents who entrusted those teachers with their kids’ welfare AND education provide a little protection as well?
You mean parents can’t trust teachers with their kids’ lives? (If so, what’s the point of trusting them to teach?)
And are most teachers stupid or incapable of keeping track of a gun? How do you think those who defend their families against home invaders do it?
Also, a responsible, law-abiding armed teacher isn’t someone a sick armed shooter wants to target: Armed shooters prefer schools because (a) guns aren’t allowed inside and (b) the havoc they want to wreak is easier when kids are defenseless. Common sense. If you’re not physically or mentally strong to handle the responsibility, then don’t sign up and let those who are do it.
Thank God for private schools who care more about kids’ security; thank God for Catholic schools who lack woke ideology; thank God for homeschoolers who get it; and thank God for making homeschooling an option for us. I’ll elaborate in a later post, but yeah: we know we can’t trust teachers or anyone else, for that matter, with our children’s education, and Sharon illustrates that teachers don’t want more accountability so we don’t want anything to do with them.
We’re facing a critical teacher shortage. Teacher prep programs are not enrolling anywhere near the number of teachers needed, and there are unprecedented numbers of school resignations. Most teachers don’t want to be armed, and requiring them to be will worsen the issue. 4/10
From what the mainstream media shows, and this won’t sound flattering at all, my understanding is that the resignations and the shortage come from (or at least partly) teachers fearing accountability: Apparently, it’s a bad thing when parents want to have some say in their kids’ education and they bring up their concerns or complain to a teacher or the School Board.
Again, why are parents just supposed to stand by while these same teachers talk about who they sleep with or tell their white students that they’re racist? Of course more accountability is needed, and if you can’t handle it, then find another profession because indoctrination shouldn’t belong anywhere in school.
Teachers don’t want to be law enforcement officers. If they did, they would have gone to the police academy. They don’t have the training to skillfully use a weapon under extraordinary pressure, nor did they go into teaching to do that. The lack of training is dangerous. 5/10
So ask for training, come on, Sharon. It’s as simple as that: If a teacher wants to own a gun to keep in school, then they should get (free) training. I think more guns + more training is something most people would hopefully support.
Along those lines, if a school administrator or employee already has a firearm, then let’s require more training, a test, a safe, and random checks, all to help ensure that person’s being responsible. Sure, it’s a few hoops to jump through, but I’m willing to help fund such an initiative for the sake of helping more kids.
Children will be killed with the guns of teachers. Every year, 18,000 children are shot and killed or wounded by firearms. Exposing and desensitizing children to guns and gun violence is traumatic, and that trauma manifests itself in our communities with more gun violence. 6/10 [My emphasis]
A significant portion of this figure comes from suicides, which is a convenient figure to hide.
But I want to go to the part I emphasized, Exposing and desensitizing children to guns, because I don’t know who told her this fallacy, or what children it applies to. Newsflash: There ARE well-adjusted adults in this country who grew up around guns and for whom seeing them as a child and beyond wasn’t traumatic. One of them is my husband and his brothers, but people like them are common.
Exposing kids to guns isn’t a bad idea, esp. if we teach them to handle them SAFELY. This way, they learn that guns aren’t evil. After all, even though many kids drown each year, you don’t see most of them who live in homes with pools grow up traumatized, do you?
And Sharon, are you saying that the teacher could go postal and shoot up a bunch of kids? And that 18,000 MORE kids would die from teachers’ guns each year? (Why is someone who isn’t mentally stable working at a school in the first place?)
Or are you saying that a kid may go rogue and find their teacher’s gun and shoot up their classmates, and that 18,000 more kids would die that way each year? If so, then please understand that the safeguards put in place to ensure that teacher’s qualified to carry a firearm in school would help prevent those kinds of situations and would in fact help prevent additional deaths by taking care of the shooter.
Though while I’m at it, why didn’t that kid get some psychiatric help too? Or are we waiting until the news headlines report on the next would-be shooter’s friends and family saying that they saw the signs but nothing was done?
It’s developmentally inappropriate for children to interact with armed adults all day. Imagine being corrected for inappropriate behavior and knowing that the teacher is armed — how will children feel? Kids need warm attachments to their teachers, and weapons hurt that. 7/10
This is the one I took the most issue with because many (if not most because why doubt it) gun-owning parents and their children have been able to form secure, loving attachments. This assumes that children are idiots and will tie discipline to getting murdered even though children whose parents own guns don’t have such fears.
This also assumes the teacher is or could be unstable enough to somehow instill in children that getting shot is an adequate form of discipline.
If the police are not legally required to protect citizens (see: Castle Rock v Gonzales), would teachers be? What if a shooter invades and a teacher doesn’t shoot? Are they liable? Can they be sued? If the police aren’t required, why teachers? 8/10
This point is excellent because I think it’s abhorrent that cops can take their sweet time in analyzing a situation and forego looking for every means necessary to apprehend a shooter and protect children. I’m with everyone on this.
Those cops in Uvalde picked the wrong profession: they made a mockery of good, responsible officers who DO sacrifice for and genuinely help their communities, and even though they can’t be held liable for their inaction, I hope that at least their community shows them they were wrong. If they expect to be able to go home every night, they shouldn’t take the oath.
But cops aren’t teachers, so no, I don’t think a teacher should be legally required to physically protect kids. To protect their minds and teach them USEFUL stuff? Yes. But to shoot someone for a kid’s sake? No, to be honest.
However, if a responsible, law-abiding teacher wants to have a gun in school, why can’t we facilitate this?
Sure, increase funding so they can take more training, etc. but so far you haven’t shared one actionable reason why teachers shouldn’t have guns in schools.
It requires specific training to be someone who runs towards danger. Katherine Schweit, the pioneer of FBI active shooter training, says police have to be in the right headspace to confront danger head on. It’s not reasonable to expect teachers to switch on a dime. 9/10
But what if some already have that experience, and they know they can take action in a school shooting? Why not let them? Further, what if someone wants to help and get a gun to help prevent more fatalities and tragedies?
Some officers aren’t “in the right head space to confront danger head on,” but teachers can be. Are you saying they’re not capable of it, that they’re somehow physically handicapped in a way that prevents them from being able to LEARN to act quickly?
There is not one credible law enforcement organization, nonprofit, school safety expert, or researcher who thinks arming teachers is the solution. Increasing the number of guns does not cause fewer gun deaths or correlate to less gun violence. 10/10
You know, experts don’t always have all the answers; I thought we learned that after Covid. But you know who might have more answers? Parents! That’s because maybe parents know what’s best for their families.
As for that last point, explain to me, then, how good people with guns have stopped bad people with guns from doing more bad things and killing more people. (Or did you already forget about Steven Wilford from earlier in this post?) Explain to me how homeowners have been able to scare off invaders and protect their families with the help of their guns.
Although gun ownership has been portrayed as “dirty, deadly — and banned,” we ought to acknowledge that guns do save lives, and if some think schools want to explore additional measures to better protect themselves (incl. arming at least some teachers–those who are willing, able, and are already law-abiding and responsible), then I believe that we should let them.
All we know for sure is that no one single policy will be solve everything. Maybe arming some teachers is part of the solution or maybe it’s not. We can address the symptoms but until we address the root cause, we’ll always be seeking the remedy.
But I’ll go out on a limb and conclude that maybe influencers who write for engagement and awards should stay out of this one.