"Locked and loaded in the hallways"

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"Locked and loaded in the hallways"
One student's opinion on how to counter school shootings across America

Not too fond of the title they gave it, but what the heck. Tell me what you think. This was my column published in last week's issue of The Algonquin Harbinger (Algonquin Reg. HS in Northborough, MA)


It has become increasingly obvious that schools are falling victim to violent attacks around the United States. That is because the security of American public schools is pitiful. Ten innocent victims have died at the hands of school shooters since August of this year. In all cases, the suspects simply walked into the school and started shooting. I bet those teachers wished they had a way to aid the children during the shootings. This trend begs the question: what can be done to increase the safety of students in school?

In Israel and Thailand, most teachers are armed inside of school. In fact, since the 1980's, the Israeli government has donated firearms to schools in order to protect their students. Since then, school violence has completely ceased. It's time the United States followed suit and allowed faculty members who are properly trained and licensed to carry a concealed weapon. Student’s lives are obviously worth protecting.

The reason criminals target schools is because they are unarmed, advertised “victimization zones.” Schools provide almost no resistance to lawful visitors, never mind someone who has posed a danger to society. Does anyone wonder why we never hear of shootings at police stations? There are none, because they have the means to defend themselves if a violent situation occurs.

Some schools are taking “security measures” to help “protect” students. West Boylston schools, for example, are planning to install cameras in their buildings. What this would do to stop a school shooting, I have no idea. Even Algonquin's “lock-down” procedure is flawed. Any poor student stranded in the hallway is instructed to leave the building, due to the fact that they won’t be let into any classroom for fear of the lurking suspect forcing his way into the class. However, it is hard to miss the gaping windows fitted into each door, through which anyone in the hallway can be seen.

Allowing teachers to have weapons in school is proactive, whereas installing an alarm or cameras is reactive. It would take several minutes for police to respond to a situation triggered by an alarm. However, armed teachers can end the violence immediately.

I asked some classmates about the idea of allowing teachers and staff to carry a concealed weapon, and I was outright appalled with some of the immature, distasteful responses I received. For example, “What if a teacher got mad and shot a kid?”

Some think that a gun can be easily snatched from a staff member. While that scenario is plausible, in order for someone to do this, they would to be aware of several specific details. First, one would need to know if the teacher is carrying. Next, one would need the power to see through clothes to know where the gun is located. Finally, they must posses the ability to pull a small object out of a holster from the inside of somebody else's waistband. Concealed means just that: concealed. Students and faculty would not even know who is carrying a weapon, or where it’s located.

There have been cases where firearms have indeed saved lives in American schools. In 1997, for example, a Mississippi student brought a rifle to school and began shooting kids. The vice principal ran to his car and brought his own handgun into the school to hold the suspect until police arrived. Although what the vice principal did is egregiously illegal by modern laws, he did the right thing. He saved lives that may have otherwise been lost.

Don’t get me wrong, I don't actually expect this to happen. Teachers and staff will forever be stripped of their second amendment rights from 7:20-1:45, day in and day out. They will never be allowed to defend themselves or their students. We will all simply continue to attend school, completely vulnerable to whoever wishes to terrorize a building full of children.
 
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Thanks guys. I think I lucked out since the only person (that I know of) that agrees with me is the editor in chief... [smile]


I hope I get a few letters to the editor... Should be a fun little battle....
 
Thanks guys. I think I lucked out since the only person (that I know of) that agrees with me is the editor in chief... [smile]


I hope I get a few letters to the editor... Should be a fun little battle....

You will be bombarded by an avalanche of emotionalism and irrationalism. The mouth-breathing idiot with the comment about angry teachers shooting students is just a preview.
 
I think that it's great.

But I'm surprised that you even had the knowledge to write it...

You know, being a high school student with only a FID. [rolleyes]

Good for you. I don't think that it will, but I would hope that it opens up some eyes. I'm sure that you'll reach a few students that didn't think along those lines.

But at least it's going to open up some avenues of discussion. Maybe even in some of the social studies classrooms.
 
Very nice!

It makes me smile to know that the next generation doesn't all have their heads firmly planted in their rectums!
 
I think that it's great.

But I'm surprised that you even had the knowledge to write it...

You know, being a high school student with only a FID. [rolleyes]

Seems the lad recently has done quite well proving he has a mature attitude and an intelligent approach to the subjects he has posted in response to. Maybe I'm missing an underlying playful element to the sarcasm.

Bravo to your well thought out article on a very serious subject...published in what is sure to be a hostile environment to your opinion! (particularly from the faculty)

-Ted
 
Are there civics classes in your school? If you need to respond to letters, I bet someone here could help you in your "research". Just run your draft letter by here a few days before due date and see what comes up.
 
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