Columbia, SC — Years ago as a school administrator, I witnessed a teacher break down. She refused to let her students leave the classroom and led us to believe she had a weapon.
We worked with law enforcement to calmly cajole her, and after five hours we persuaded her to release the kids. She received medical care, and we modeled a bloodless lesson to the students.
A surprising number of volatile situations occur in schools; those problems are solved daily by administrators and teachers who have no guns and want no guns. Very sadly, not all such problems have happy endings, as we saw in the tragic, high-drama case at Sandy Hook Elementary School.
But are guns in schools the answer?
The NRA’s Wayne LaPierre wants to arm teachers. He says the only thing to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.
Can he tell the good guys from the bad guys? Is it so black and white? Almost nothing is.
I often imagine that if only I had a vaporizer button, I’d vaporize all these whackos who don’t agree with me. Fortunately for them, no one has provided me with such a button. Will Mr. LaPierre give me one? The facetious point being, who has not entertained a violent idea?
Given the right circumstance and easy access to an assault rifle, enter tragedy. The big payoff from strict gun control is preventing everyday Joes, as well as hotheads and twisted minds, from having easy access to deadly weapons.
We know it’s a matter of degree, because we deny everyone access to nuclear weapons and chemical weapons. If you can’t get them, you’re not going to use them. Maybe a rock, but not a nuke.
The ultimate NRA justification for vigilante arms caches is protection from tyranny. But computerized social networking and satellite surveillance guarantee the government can find us. It could conceivably zero in on us in our beds with a drone. Had the Founding Fathers known 21st century technical capabilities, the Second Amendment might have advised us to reach back and pat our behinds goodbye. It’s laughable to think owning an assault rifle would help.
Since the feds haven’t come after us yet and mass killers have, wouldn’t we be better off with sensible gun control?
Behavior predicts behavior: The killers will come again. Let’s prepare for them: no assault rifles; no high capacity magazines; no exceptions to background checks.
Let them come with a rock.
Robin C. Burleson