Allowing teachers to be armed in classrooms. It’s a topic of conversation…again. And there’s ample evidence the idea is a good one.
John Lott is the president of the Crime Prevention Research Center. Lott is also a leading expert on guns and is the author of nine books including “More Guns, Less Crime.” In June of 2019 he wrote:
Looking at all of the school shootings in the U.S. from 2000 to 2018, the Crime Prevention Research Center, of which I am the president, found two points.
-Commonly mentioned fears don’t occur. No student has ever gotten ahold of a teacher’s gun, nor has a teacher legally carrying a gun ever accidentally shot someone.
-Outside of suicides or gang violence in the wee hours of the morning when schools aren’t in session, not one person has been wounded or killed from a shooting when armed teachers are around.
This research is pretty simple. It doesn’t involve complicated statistics. It simply looks at all the schools that have teachers carrying and points out that gun control advocates fears haven’t materialized.
As of October 1, 2019, some Florida teachers can carry firearms on campus. The measure was signed into law by Gov. Ron DeSantis. CBS News reported:
Back to John Lott. He along with Kentucky Congressman Thomas Massie also wrote in June of 2019:
No student has ever taken a teacher’s gun. In fact, the only accidental discharge occurred outside of school hours and resulted in minor injuries for the teacher in possession of the handgun.
Moreover, school insurance premiums haven’t risen as a result of allowing teachers to carry.
Police are essential, but they can’t be everywhere at once. Even if an officer is stationed at a school, shooters are most likely to target him first. We’ve seen this time and again at malls, nightclubs, and schools. By contrast, concealed carry means would-be shooters won’t know who is armed. Even if they take an officer by surprise, they must consider they are revealing their position to someone else who has the potential to stop them.
Gun control groups paint a frightening picture of what might go wrong if teachers carry concealed firearms, but that fear loses credibility in light of the overwhelming success of concealed carry at schools. Armed teachers deter attackers. It is past time for us to pass common-sense gun laws that work.
And the final argument goes to Matt Palumbo, the author of The Man Behind the Curtain: Inside the Secret Network of George Soros, who wrote on the Bongino Report within the past few days:
To “arm teachers” doesn’t mean giving every teacher a gun like the leftist caricature of the policy alleges, it means allowing teachers who are already trained and have concealed carry permits to be armed in schools. Those with concealed carry permits are already trusted to carry a firearm practically everywhere else.
While always portrayed as a radical idea from the Left, there are already 20 states that allow teachers and other school staff to concealed carry on school grounds. In Ohio alone there are over 200 school districts that allow teachers to carry guns (where an estimated 10-12% carry). In Texas 36% of school districts (365) already allow armed teachers. One school district in Uvalde allows armed teachers (the Utopia Independent School District), but Robb Elementary School is not part of that district.
The Crime Prevention Research Center (CPRC) studied school districts that allow for armed teachers and staff from 2000-2018, and negative consequences have yet to be seen.
The objections to arming teachers are relatively straightforward, with the alleged potential consequences including teachers becoming more aggressive with students, students attempting to steal a teacher’s gun, or teachers accidentally shooting innocent bystanders in the event they do need to discharge their weapon (as if being unarmed is preferable in that scenario).
Fortunately those objections are bunk, as a review of the evidence from the CPRC has found. Among all schools from 2000-2018 there were 306 gunshots on school property, with 188 involving a death or injury, and 48 being suicides. Firearm related deaths are rising at schools, but of course that needs to be put in the national context that one is 800 times more likely to be killed by a gunshot wound outside of a school than inside one.
Regardless, there is one category of schools that have zero deaths from firearms when school was in session – and it’s those schools who allow teachers to carry.
But what of unintended consequences, such as a teacher accidentally discharging a weapon, or having one stolen? According to the CPRC:
Only one accidental discharge by a permit holder on K-12 property occurred. It occurred in Utah in November 2014 and resulted in only a very minor injury. A teacher discharged her gun in a faculty bathroom after school hours, and she was slightly injured when fragments from the toilet struck her. A few other accidents have occurred during firearm training classes held outside of school hours. There has never been a case of a student getting a hold of a teacher’s or school staffer’s gun.
One legitimate counter argument to the CRPC study could be that it suffers from a relatively small sample size in the context of all public schools, and because school shootings are extremely rare events, it could simply be by chance that schools that allow armed teachers haven’t seen any shootings. After all, the overwhelming majority of America’s nearly 100,000 public schools have never seen a school shooting, and there are entire states that haven’t had one in their history.
That may be true – but given that we know from the thousands of districts that already do allow armed teachers they can do so without any issue, there is no reason to disarm them.