The debate about whether or not to arm teachers for the defense of their students has raged for some time. There is little consensus one way or the other since both points of view have some merit to their arguments. Let’s examine the pros and cons of arming teachers for defense now.
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Pros of Arming Teachers
There are a number of possible advantages that come along with arming teachers. Before getting into those advantages, it’s important to take a moment to talk about the safety of firearms. If teachers are going to be armed, it’s crucial they receive proper training in how to shoot and how to store guns when they are not in use.
Consider bringing a trained professional onto campus to educate teachers on the best places to conceal their weapons while at work. Additionally, schedule a time for the teachers to go to a gun range to learn the proper way to shoot and protect others.
Teachers that are already armed will stand a much greater fighting chance if a shooter does arrive at their school. Teachers that have the ability to fight back can act as a deterrent for a shooter to approach their classroom.
Any violence is potentially risky, but many shooters will likely move on to easier targets if they know that a particular school has teachers that are armed with guns. The potential to save the lives of children is easy to see with this point.
Many violent school shooters will even shoot themselves if presented with an armed defense. It’s well known that school shooters typically take their own lives when it becomes clear that they cannot escape the situation without surrendering to the authorities.
Armed teachers are just as valid a threat as police officers, so school shooters may decide to end their rampage early if they unknowingly target a school that has teachers that can fight back effectively.
A popular counterpoint to this idea poses the question of where guns will be kept. After all, children could potentially injure themselves or others if they get their hands on a weapon. But teachers can easily store their guns in specific gun cases that are locked at all times unless an emergency scenario arises.
Essentially, armed teachers present a greater deterrent for violence and allow for a better defense in the event of a shooting situation. Emergency responders cannot respond instantly to any emergency and will typically take a few minutes to arrive. This is plenty of time for casualties to mount.
Cons of Arming Teachers
There are a few potential downsides to arming teachers, however. Despite the efforts of teachers to keep guns contained or secured in cases, there always exists the possibility that some children will get their hands on a firearm and cause damage to themselves or another student. This is the same possibility that exists with guns in the rest of the world; it can’t be ignored when it comes to armed teachers and schools.
Another possible flaw in this idea is that a plethora of guns at a given school can potentially give a shooter more ammunition. In this worst-case scenario, armed teachers will have supplied more weapons or destructive power to a school shooter instead of stopping them.
Finally, another big wrinkle to be ironed out of this idea is that teachers would be liable for any mistakes made with their firearm. While this makes sense legally, it can serve as a deterrent for people to become teachers in the future and may even drive many teachers to resign in protest. This could create a teacher shortage and prevent new teachers from entering the school system.
There’s no denying that personal moral views play a huge role in gun ownership and gun use. Requiring teachers to use firearms for the defense of their students is a big legal and ethical issue that will need significant debate and compromise to come to fruition.
As you can see, there are good arguments to be made for or against the idea of arming teachers at school. It’s up to you to decide what you personally believe based on your own moral views.