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LETTER: Consider consequences of arming teachers

April 27, 2018

Consider consequences of arming teachers

It is imperative for security and law enforcement professionals to continue to support Teresa Meredith [Arm teachers with resources, not guns, April 13 Forefront] and educators like her in the battle to protect our students. For all the reasons mentioned by Meredith and others I wish to point out that allowing teachers to educate, and not burdening them with the responsibility of carrying guns, is in the best interest of our kids. 

Parents and professionals must be made aware of three additional points to support Meredith’s position.

First, active shooter events, fortunately, only last a few minutes; however, these valuable seconds when a trained police professional arrives on scene may be spoiled when they are confronted by a teacher/administrator wielding a firearm. This educator, if not wounded by a police officer’s miscalculation, will be forced to disarm, will be searched and interrogated before those same officers proceed with their search for the active shooter. Valuable time lost.

Second, what parent will support a well-intentioned teacher who discharges his/her firearm in protection of the school, and misses the intended active shooter only to strike an innocent student? Some of the best trained shooters miss their intended target more than 80 percent of the time—meaning eight of 10 bullets strike something else other than the active shooter.  

And third, in the interest of our respected teachers. Will the school district support a teacher who discharged his/her firearm in defense of the school only to strike an innocent student? Highly trained police officers are scrutinized every time they discharge their firearm in defense of themselves or others, and there are laws that protect an officer’s legal behavior. For those teachers contemplating carrying a firearm, your well-intended act may not be as well-received as you might believe. 

Let’s stand together and draw a “red line” that adding more guns in schools and on school property is not in society’s best interest. I support “gun-free school zones.”

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Bruce A. Canal
Avon

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