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Thursday, February 14, 2019

Changes needed to avoid school shootings

It seems the debate on the right to self-defense tends to take on one of two extremes.

Some people conclude the way to get rid of shootings is to get rid of the guns used to commit them.

That proposal has multiple problems. One, we have a Second Amendment. Two, the right to self-defense or the examples of oppression that come when it is denied is long established in the Scriptures. Three, the problem with people using guns to break laws is not that we don't have enough laws against using guns for evil.

The opposite extreme is to “arm teachers” in the classroom.

You don't have to start too many conversations in an elementary school before you find teachers who object to this proposal. Many of them don't want to be armed.

There's a difference between a government policy mandating and funding the arming of every teacher and allowing those teachers that want to arms themselves to exercise their constitutional rights.

One does not need either extreme in order to make a difference when it comes to preventing a school shooting.

What's needed on the ground, in the building, and in the classroom to deter shooters is uncertainty.

Under current policy, any would-be shooter knows that they should have at most one armed person to contend with—the police department-funded school resource office—and the rest are relatively defenseless against their attacks.

If we were to allow people to exercise their constitutional rights, this would introduce the possibility that others in a school building (a) could be armed, and (b) they don't know who those people are so that a potential shooter's willingness to enter a building and harm others would be vastly reduced.

Another option to expand defenses on campus would be to arm security personnel that are currently unarmed. If they wear uniforms, this would not create as much uncertainty as concealed weapons would, but it would still greatly increase the level of defense available to school personnel and students.

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