Arming Teachers? No Thanks

Students at Granada Hills Charter High School spell "enough"

Students at Granada Hills Charter High School spell “enough” / photo credit: CNN

Shootings are becoming an ever-increasing danger in the United States. According to the Gun Violence Archive, 2,470 people have died in shootings as of March 4, 2018. Probably the most publicized was the shooting at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida where 17 died. In the aftermath of this tragedy, a debate has sprung up again.

Similar to after other mass shootings, the debate is over about what action should be taken to prevent more people from being killed. The two prominent positions are stricter gun control legislation or giving teachers the right to carry a concealed firearm. If you want my frank and honest opinion, I think that giving teachers guns is an idiotic idea that will do nothing to prevent shootings.

The idea that giving guns to the “good guys” will prevent gun violence has been proven wrong time after time. In a shooting at a church in Texas, 40 people were shot, 26 of which were killed before an armed civilian stopped the gunman. This was cited as proof  that carrying concealed weapons is a good idea for public safety. These people appear to have been ignoring the fact that 26 died. There are direct correlations between the availability of guns and homicide rates. America has six times the number of gun homicides that Canada does, over seven times more than Sweden, and nearly 16 times more then Germany. All of these countries have stricter gun control, either in limited gun availability or restrictions on ammunition. Many guns are treated in America as if they form a magic shield against bullets. I fail to see how a shoot out would protect students. 

Many “solutions” to the shooting issue have been introduced; giving teachers guns is just one of them. What often seems to be overlooked is one of the simplest and most direct solutions of all, gun and ammunition control. People seemed so fixated on coping with the problem instead of dealing with the problem itself. The main reason that we have so many shootings is the ready availability of firearms. Instead of giving the “good guys” guns, why not just prevent the bad guys from getting guns in the first place?