Guns in Schools?
The way some folks are carrying on, you would think that all the teachers, parents, and some of the students in public schools in NC are toting light machine guns in their back packs, giving each other an icy stare from behind a pair of “operator” type reflector lenses. No more groups of friends, but squads of folks going down the hall, steely eyes never resting, even doing the “Ulster Twirl” like the SAS on patrol in Belfast. Maybe more like Delta force on training exercises. Have the conservatives lost their minds?
As usual, the truth is pretty far from what is in the papers and other media. First, it is still a FELONY to actually carry a concealed handgun on a school campus. Believe it or not, I am O.K. with that. I have had some active shooter training, and regardless of what folks think, a concealed carry permit holder with a gun on school grounds is very unlikely to make any difference in an active shooter scenario. Their only positive role would be as a deterent. That is to say, if folks knew teachers, administrators, etc. were possibly armed they might pick another place to have a shoot ‘em up. I think the operative word here is might. I know the movies look cool with Bruce Willis single handedly taking on fifty terrorists in all the movies, but the truth is DIE HARD would have worked out a lot more like DIE QUICK in real life.
In the article I have linked to some folks seem to be concerned that a well meaning student or teacher/administrator would try to run to their car and get a handgun and return inside the school to try and “take out “ an active shooter. Well, first, that would be a personal choice. You can’t legislate against stupid. Second, if you look at the way these things usually go down the time frame just isn’t long enough, the training to deal with a situation isn’t there, and how would one person with a handgun go back to his vehicle, get a gun, return to the building and deal with a threat that he has no idea how to locate? Bruce Willis seems to always know where the bad guy is, but reality is that it is going to be hard to find someone who is not wanting to be found. That is exactly what the anti-gun people are saying! AM I agreeing with them? YES! I agree with everything they are saying, except the part about the police going in and mowing down anyone with a gun. That part, even coming from a police officer, is bravo sierra. Just not true. Even in an active shooter situation it is unlikely responders would mow anyone down without warning. If the chief in the article is training his people to shoot anyone, anytime without warning we have a serious problem. I sincerely hope that is not what he was implying.
The antis are exactly right in what they are saying. The trouble is they are using sleight of hand to deceive people. A man told me a long time ago that “Figures don’t lie, but Liars sometimes do figure.” I am not sure where antis get the idea that all concealed carry holders are vacant of common sense. I Can assure you the last thing I would do if I were in a situation where there was an active shooter is to run to my car and get a handgun and come back into the building. This new legislation isn’t about turning granddad into Delta force. What it is about is not forcing law abiding citizens to give up their liberty because of the criminal intent of others. I have a carry permit. I jumped through the hoops of learning the law, being schooled on safety, another background check, and I don’t think I should have to leave my handgun at home when I drop off or pick up a student or go to a school on business. I am not the Po Lice. I don’t want to be the Po Lice. I am not a special forces tactical operator, I am not a member of the SWAT team. But I am not going to drive 14 miles round trip to take my handgun home so I can come back to the school and help my wife, who is a teacher with some project she is working on. I am also very glad she now has the option to keep a handgun in a “closed compartment in a locked vehicle”. Before the law changed there was no point in getting a carry permit. Like so many other people who work in public education her life literally revolves around the school the students, and the activities she is involved in. Up until now a carry permit would have been useless. It was a felony for a student or a staff member to have a firearm in a car before October 1. Now, it is a matter of choice for her and all the other teachers and administrators who work in public education.
The kind of thinking displayed by the folks who are opposed to this new legislation offends me deeply. As a police officer or an administrator, do they really think we are that stupid? Apparently so. If nothing else it is Chicken Little thinking. “The sky is falling!” Really? It hasn’t hit the ground anywhere else that having a firearm locked in a vehicle is legal. When has a student ever stolen a gun from a staff member’s car and used it to commit a mass murder? When has a concealed carry permit holder ever been shot by police while playing anti-terrorist? I agree that a “good guy with a gun” stopping a mass shooting is a little far-fetched. The detterent value is huge. But the effectiveness of a lone defender with no active shooter training and only with a handgun against a mass shooting is virtually nil. Anyone who has taken my concealed carry class should understand that.
So, let’s recap. The new law is bad because a CCH permit holder might get his gun out of his car and get shot when Law Enforcement mistakes them for a terrorist. Sure they will, it happens all the time. The new law is bad because someone might steal a gun from a car and go on a mass shooting spree. Kind of spur of the moment, but hey, I get mad enough to shoot people a least once a day, don’t you? It was there, locked in a vehicle in a closed compartment, and I just had to shoot someone with it .The new law is bad because a parent who has a concealed handgun in his car might get mad, go get the handgun, and shoot a teacher or administrator. He wasn’t planning on it, and he isn’t going to drive home and get a gun, but because it is in the car…why not just shoot someone? The new law is bad because the gun might go off all by its self and kill someone. In a locked vehicle, in a closed compartment. Hey, it could happen, right? We all know they go off by themselves all the time. The reason I am offended is not that these people are ignorant. The reason I am offended is because a certain segment of society has decided that those of us who carry a gun are idiots and cannot be trusted. I sure hope they don’t decide they dis trust Jews, Baptists, left handed people, folks of different races, fat people, etc. I have a sneaky suspicion they don’t trust conservatives. The best thing to come out of all this is the reminder that everyone doesn’t think the same way, and it is very seldom because of reality. Both sides of the gun issue have some fringe elements. There are public educators and police officers, as well as gun owners who are way out there. My opinion on this one is what it typically is; keep it in the middle folks. The truth is usually somewhere in the middle. The changes that have come into effect October 1 are not about public safety, they are administrative. These changes will keep law abiding people from being forced to make major adjustments in their day to day lives to comply with a senseless legal code. The whining from the folks who lost ground in this legal change should be a reminder of just how real their distrust and loathing for some of our ideas really is. Their tactics should remind us that you can deceive folks without ever actually telling a lie. Relevance is just as important as accuracy. None of the “concerns” voiced by opponents of this latest legal change seem relevant to me.