Trump Floats Idea Of Arming School Teachers

President Trump is pressing the idea of arming teachers to stop shootings in schools.

President Trump held a “listening session” yesterday at the White House with an audience that included survivors and family members from victims of recent school shootings and community leaders and at one point the President repeated an idea that has come from many on the right after previous school shootings, namely that we should let teachers and other school authorities bring weapons on to campus:

Seated between teenage survivors of the Florida school shooting, President Trump said during a White House listening session Wednesday that arming teachers and posting gun-toting veterans in schools could deter or stop school shooters.

His comments came during an emotional meeting that included Vice President Pence, Education Secretary Betsy DeVos, and school-shooting survivors and families who had lost children to gun violence, including a father who buried his daughter just last week. They poured out grief and anger over the lack of efforts to stem school shootings.

Trump talked about strengthening background checks and increasing mental health resources. But his most pointed and specific remarks came when he spoke about adding security to schools by arming teachers and posting gun-equipped veterans.

Trump posited that if Aaron Feis, a popular football coach, has been armed, he could have stopped the gunman who killed Feis and 16 others last week at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

“If the coach had a firearm in his locker when he ran at this guy — that coach was very brave, saved a lot of lives, I suspect — but if he had a firearm he would not have had to run. He would have shot and that would be the end of it,” Trump said.

He then proposed to arm 20 percent of schoolteachers and to hire veterans as armed school guards.

“A teacher would have a concealed gun on them. They’d go for special training and they would be there and you would no longer be a gun-free zone,” Trump said. He suggested that an armed teacher on campus could reach a school shooter faster than responding police officers. “You’d have a lot of people that would be armed, that’d be ready.”

He then polled the room, asking who liked the idea. Several people — including the parents of survivors and victims of the shooting at Stoneman Douglas High — raised their hands.

His proposal to make 20 percent of public schoolteachers ready to fire back at a school shooter would mean training and arming about 640,000 people nationwide. The idea got a warm reception among some parents, but was met with swift backlash from teachers’ groups nationwide.

“Bringing more guns into our schools does nothing to protect our students and educators from gun violence. Our students need more books, art and music programs, nurses and school counselors; they do not need more guns in their classrooms,” said Lily Eskelsen Garcia, president of the National Education Association, the largest teachers union. The group represents 3 million educators in K-12 schools and on college campuses. “We need solutions that will keep guns out of the hands of those who want to use them to massacre innocent children and educators. Arming teachers does nothing to prevent that.”

“This is bar none, the worst theory of action I’ve ever heard,” said Shanna Peeples, a former educator who worked in Texas when she won the 2015 National Teacher of the Year award. She shared her thoughts on Twitter. “Texas law allows schools to arm their teachers. That’s not a good thing. None of us are trained to respond to threats in the way law enforcement is.”

At least two school districts in Texas have armed teachers, both in remote parts of the state. Their superintendents have defended the policies, saying their educators are prepared to respond if a gunman arrives on campus, according to KXAN-TV.

At a town hall hosted by CNN on Wednesday evening, Broward County School Superintendent Robert Runcie, whose district includes Stoneman Douglas High, roundly rejected the idea.

“We don’t need to put guns in the hands of teachers. You know what we need? We need to arm our teachers with more money in their pocket,” Runcie said to roaring applause.

The idea of arming teachers has received a mixed reception among Americans. In a recent Washington Post-ABC News poll, 42 percent of respondents said armed teachers could have prevented last week’s school shooting in Parkland, Fla., while 51 percent disagreed.

Delaney Tarr, a 17-year-old senior who survived the shooting at Stoneman Douglas, said it was impractical to arm schoolteachers.

“There are so many things that could go wrong,” Tarr said. “We are not a prison. We are not a police force.”

The President continued to push the idea this morning on Twitter:

Slate’s Josh Levin argues that the idea that Trump, and others, is proposing here wouldn’t work, and cites the 1999 Columbine shooting as an example of why:

On April 20, 1999, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold killed 12 students and one teacher at Columbine. On the scene that day was Neil Gardner, an armed sheriff’s deputy who had been policing the school for almost two years.

As a CNN report describes, Gardner was eating lunch when he got a call from a custodian that he was needed in the school’s back parking lot. A few minutes later, he encountered Harris and the two exchanged gunfire. Harris was not hit and ran back inside the school. At that point, “Gardner called for additional units to respond to the south parking lot of Columbine High School. … While he was on the radio calling for assistance, five other Jefferson County deputies already were on their way, arriving only minutes after the first report of a ‘female down’ at Columbine High School.” Later, Gardner saw Harris again, through a broken window. Once again, he fired. Once again, he didn’t hit him.

Though it’s possible Gardner distracted Harris enough to prevent additional carnage, that’s ultimately unknowable. What does seem certain is that a single armed security guard had little chance that day of preventing a pair of heavily armed killers from doing what they set out to do.

Much of the logic behind Trump’s proposal, which has been repeated by many on the right before and in the week since the massacre in Florida, is a variation on a theme we’ve seen from gun-rights supporters in the past. Basically, the argument is summarized as the idea of a “good guy with a gun” who can stop a gunman if only they were allowed to carry a weapon on campus. Indeed, in response to past school shooting incidents, several states have moved to liberalize their laws to allow teachers, professors, and other staff members to carry guns on campus. For many gun rights supporter, the idea of the “good guy with a gun” is such an article of faith that it is one that you can count on being brought up every time we have one of these mass shooting events. On some level, I suppose, the idea has some logic to it in that someone who may be considering the idea of going out and shooting up a school might be deterred from doing so if they knew there was a possibility that someone might be shooting back at them. Additionally, one could make the argument that if someone was on the scene to take out a shooter they could early on in the incident rather than waiting for police to arrive on scene, it could minimize the carnage and save lives.

In reality, though, it strike me that there are several problems with the hypothesis and assumptions behind Trump’s proposal, and that far from making the situation in America’s schools better, it could make them worse.

First of all, there is very little actual evidence that shows that someone who is armed will be able to do much of anything effective in the event of a mass shooting event like what happened last week in Parkland, Florida. When pressed, the people who advance these arguments typically bring up some isolated incidents where a member of the public or off duty law enforcement officer who happened to be on scene during a shooting incident and used their weapon to either stop or subdue an armed criminal. These example, though, have been largely anecdotal and none of them that I am aware of have occurred under the kind of circumstances that we saw in Parkland, last year in Las Vegas or Southerland Springs, Texas, at Sandy Hook Elementary School, in San Bernardino, or in Aurora, Colorado. In those cases, victims and survivors alike were faced with an incident where someone with a high-powered weapon was firing rapidly into crowds of people while other people desperately tried to flee the scene or hide in a place of safety, and the incidents occurred over a very short period of time. Under those types of circumstances, it’s not at all clear that even someone who is trained in the use of a weapon could accurately and effectively use that weapon to stop a mass shooter, nor could we guarantee that such a person would not end up causing more loss of innocent life than might otherwise occur.

Second, based on the circumstances of several of the incidents listed above, as well as other shooting incidents that have occurred over the years, that the prospect that they could die is something that would actually deter a potential mass shooter.With the exception of last week’s shooting in Florida and the shooting in Aurora, Colorado in July 2012, nearly all of the shooters involved either ended up killing themselves after completing their act or were brought down by police. The only exception to that rule was the San Bernardino shooting, and in that case the two suspects were killed on the day of the shooting after trying to escape from police. For the most part, though, the people who committed these acts seemed to clearly intend to either kill themselves of be filled as part of their act. Given that, the prospect of being taken out by an armed teacher or school security officer probably isn’t much of a deterrent to someone who already plans to die anyway. Finally, it’s worth noting that the shooter in the Parkland, Florida case was apparently wearing some form of body armor at the time he committed his act, and this has been true of shooters in other incidents as well. In those cases, someone shooting back may end up not being effective at all and could just cause the shooter to be more earnest and effective in their shooting before ultimately bringing the incident to an end via suicide.

Finally, there are the rather obvious logistical questions involved in any effort to allow teachers and other staff members to bring weapons on campus that advocates for the idea don’t seem to have adequate answers for. For example, exactly how would we ensure that the people permitted to bring weapons on campus would be adequately trained in the use of weapons to the point that they could be trusted to use those weapons responsibly? In both his remarks yesterday and his tweets today, the President talks about training these people but he doesn’t talk about how they would be trained. Another serious question that would need to be addressed is how it could be ensured that the people who bring weapons on campus would secure them effectively so that they don’t end up falling into the hands of students or others. Finally, there’s the question of who exactly would pay for the training that Trump is talking about. The Washington Post’s Philip Bump estimates that such a program could end up costing up to $718 million or more. Given the fact that we live in an age where teachers end up having to spend money out of their own pockets to buy supplies for their classroom, or in many cases relying on parents to buy items off lists that one commonly finds at places such as Staples and Office Depot at the beginning of a school year, the idea that Federal, state, or local governments are going to be eager to pony up that much money to train teachers with guns but not buy the supplies they need for their classrooms seems utterly silly.

None of these criticisms are meant to shoot down, for lack of a better term, the idea of increased armed security in schools. It’s already the case that many school districts even in the best suburban areas have a school security officer on duty during the school day, and the prospect of increasing the number of such officers is one worthy of discussion. In the case of Marjorie Stoneman Douglas High School, for example, there was apparently only one such officer for a campus of 3,000 students spread out over three separate buildings and that this officer was in another building at the time of the shooting and didn’t arrive at the scene of the shooting until it was over and the shooter had escaped. Additionally, there may be some communities where properly trained armed teachers would be workable and acceptable to parents. I suspect, though, that many parents, and students, aren’t going to exactly be receptive to the idea that even a small amount of teachers might be armed and pointing to this idea as the solution to the mass shooting problem is really something of a deflection from the real issues that need to addressed.

FILED UNDER: *FEATURED, Donald Trump, Education, Guns and Gun Control, Politicians, US Politics
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010. Before joining OTB, he wrote at Below The BeltwayThe Liberty Papers, and United Liberty Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook


  1. OzarkHillbilly says:

    Yes, because it’s not enough that our teachers are supposed to educate our children, now they have to protect them too.

    Also as somebody else pointed out elsewhere, what teacher wants to come face to face with a SWAT team while holding a gun?

  2. Mark Ivey says:

    More guns! -TrumpBots

  3. drj says:

    Finally, it’s worth noting that the shooter in the Parkland, Florida case was apparently wearing some form of body armor at the time he committed his act, and this has been true of shooters in other incidents as well.

    Of course, we shouldn’t provide teachers with just a couple of lame-ass handguns. If, instead, they are equipped with fast-firing, high-powered rifles (I would argue for AT LEAST 7.62x51mm), chances are that body armor will be insufficient to stop the bullets!

    What could possibly go wrong?

  4. James Pearce says:

    I support arming teachers. In fact, I think every teacher’s union should make “open carry” a requirement for membership. Say it with me, “You can take my tenure from my cold dead hands.”


  5. gVOR08 says:

    Some people believe more guns make us safer. Some people believe more guns make us less safe. It’s a shame the NRA shut down government funding for gun research, otherwise we might know for sure. We might have vetted answers to how many lives would be saved or lost if teachers packed.

    However, short of some sort of official, well researched, peer reviewed answer, we pretty much know the answer. Why do you suppose the NRA was afraid of research?

  6. MBunge says:

    Trump’s idea is dumb, but this…

    someone shooting back may end up not being effective at all and could just cause the shooter to be more earnest and effective

    …is even dumber. Don’t shoot back because it might make the guy trying to massacre people mad?

    The ultimate extension of the President’s suggestion is that we all have to live like armed guards in a giant prison. On the other hand, we could virtually eliminate drunk driving deaths by requiring all cars to have breathalyzer ignition locks and we could greatly reduce traffic deaths by placing governors on every engine so the can’t go faster than 60 mph. Yet no one seems interested in saving those tens of thousands of lives.

    One thing I am sure of is that our guide on public policy shouldn’t be the generation that’s eating Tide Pods.


  7. gVOR08 says:

    @James Pearce: I saw someone comment this morning that the teachers should note the only public employee unions that get any respect from Republicans are the ones whose members are strapped.

  8. Kathy says:

    While not entirely irrational, the ides of posting armed people in school has a whiff of superhero fantasy or action movie heroics to it.

    You’d also unleash an arms race of sorts. Mass shooters would begin to get body armor, so armed guards would need it too, plus armor-piercing ammo. The next shooter gets that ammunition as well, and so it goes on.

  9. al-Ameda says:

    Why not open carry for students too?

    Especially for high schools – elementary and middle schools I’m not yet convinced.
    Every student would be required to take a 1-day Second Amendment Immersion and Orientation course. And that, combined the Second Amendment training, should be sufficient to prepare any 15 , 16, or 17 year old teen age boy for that moment when he knows it’s time to ‘man up’ and defend himself.

    What could go wrong?

  10. Franklin says:

    Ronald Reagan was surrounded by highly-trained, armed Secret Service agents. Perhaps he and Brady would’ve fared better if they had been protected by a bunch of math teachers.

  11. Franklin says:

    By the way, I actually don’t dismiss the idea out-of-hand. Without research, it’s difficult to know if it would offset the larger number of accidents that more guns would result in. But let’s say it did make a small positive net difference, and was added to the bigger difference that would be made by banning AR-15s, bumpstocks. We could probably save a decent number of innocent lives. Unfortunately, Amurica freedum hellyeah.

  12. Kathy says:

    @Franklin: Don’t forget both Reagan and Brady were shot despite being surrounded by armed and trained Secret Service agents.

  13. mattb says:

    The reality is that most police (and other law enforcement professionals) don’t get enough on the job training with their weapons (including tactical shooting under live fire simulations).

    To imagine teachers (who are paid far less and have equal if not greater practical limitations on their time) would somehow be able to add this to their current job expectation is pure baloney.

    That’s before we get to discussions about securing weapons or the logistics of getting into a firefight when a school shooting is unfolding.

  14. KM says:


    On the other hand, we could virtually eliminate drunk driving deaths by requiring all cars to have breathalyzer ignition locks

    I’m totally OK with that. I’m willing to bet if that becomes required tech it will be streamlined shortly to not be a major hassle and can be as easy as strapping on your seat-belt. While we’re at it, build in checks for weed for the inevitable legalization. Think two steps ahead and get that patent in…..

    One thing I am sure of is that our guide on public policy shouldn’t be the generation that’s eating Tide Pods.

    Pfft like your generation didn’t have people doing stupid things – where do you think the concept of childproofing came from? Because you idiots were doing things that lead to childproof caps and the like. I do love how this has become a Republican meme to try and discredit the kids speaking out, however. Keep insulting them and watch a whole generation go Dem that wouldn’t have. These are your future voters you’re pissing off and many can vote this year….. in an election year you can’t afford to lose.

  15. Liberal Capitalist says:

    You know…

    I just can’t see how this could possibly go wrong.


  16. KM says:

    Stop and think about who you had as teachers in high school. Did you want to trust them with a weapon and your safety?

    Stop and think about the teachers you’ve met at your child’s school. Do you trust them to be a good shot?

    This isn’t the hypothetical good guy with a gun. This is the PE teacher you see in Target. This is the cranky math teacher, the absent-minded English teacher, the sweet little old librarian, the disinterested staff in main office. Now picture these people armed, with little to no training and the ability to shoot not just the attacker but your child by mistake. Would you be willing to do a little William Tell demonstration with any of them – be 20ft or so away from the target? No? Then why would you do that to your kids?!

    I know several teachers I wouldn’t trust with a steak knife, let alone something with real stopping power. This will only end in tears and extra dead kids the teachers accidentally kill pretending to be Rambo.

  17. rachel says:

    This mini-drama is has gone beyond a trope and is now verging on a cliché:

    Trump: [Says something stupid]
    Citizens: Boo! That’s stupid!
    Trump: I never said [the stupid thing he said earlier]

    Rinse and repeat.

    ETA: Why do so many people think just having a gun will magically solve a problem? I’ve never understood this.

  18. James Pearce says:


    The ultimate extension of the President’s suggestion is that we all have to live like armed guards in a giant prison.

    That’s the right’s vision of “liberty.” Metal detectors everywhere. Armed dudes in uniforms suspiciously eyeing crowds. Cries of “He’s got a gun” resulting in instant death. (Contrary to the crap you hear from lefty activists, most of the people killed by police in this country are, in fact, armed men brandishing weapons.)

    Suicidal psychos who want to go down in blazes of glory, meanwhile, will merely be joining everyone else in being inconvenienced.

  19. Modulo Myself says:

    There should also be an attempt to hire people as teachers who think kids just need to stop wearing baggy pants and start calling people sir and ma’am. Look for men who tried to be cops, for example, but failed. Really get the best and brightest, so that when a group of teens calls them basic bitches they go nuts and whip out their Glocks.

  20. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    So in Parkland the kid walked in to the school and pulled the fire alarm. In less than a minute or two you had hallways full of already panicked kids. Now throw in the perp, and an armed teacher or two in a gunfight.
    What could go wrong?
    Now imagine being a cop showing up on the scene. You’ve got two armed people. Are they both bad guys? Is one a good guy? Which one?
    This is just another stupid idea from the NRA that Trump, grateful recipient of $30M in campaign funds from the NRA, is parroting. Gun nuts imagine everyone living in the wild west. They have hero fantasies. It’s all complete nonsense.
    I’ve got nothing against guns, I’m in the market for a Colt 1911 as we speak, but we have to be much more serious about regulating them. Guns have one purpose; they are built to kill. And yet they are easy for practically anyone to buy. Well regulated in the 2nd means well trained. Gun owners should be required to undergo rigorous training, commensurate with the responsibility of possessing a machine designed to kill. This training should include mental health evaluations.
    Hopefully no more innocent kids have to die before our politicians get their heads out of the NRA’s ass.

  21. Kathy says:

    Also keep in mind that responding to a shooter’s fire is a last resort situation. Definitely NOT what you want as your policy to prevent mass shootings.

  22. michael reynolds says:

    This is what I tweeted to my 21,000 Twitter followers:

    I hope young people who will soon be of voting age see what is happening with #ParklandStudentsSpeak 100% of the people sliming these kids are Republicans. Every last one. Whatever lies @GOP ever tells you, remember this moment in time, remember what these people are.

    I attached a helpful photograph from Charlottesville.

  23. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:
    The thing I’ve been saying for a long time, is that every one of these events causes the pendulum to swing further…when it does finally swing back the gun nuts are not going to like the results. The longer it takes to get change, the greater the changes are going to be. If the gun nuts had worked towards sensible regulations earlier, the impact wouldn’t be so great. If not after Parkland…it’s only going to get worse after the next tragedy.

  24. Gustopher says:


    we could virtually eliminate drunk driving deaths by requiring all cars to have breathalyzer ignition locks … Yet no one seems interested in saving those tens of thousands of lives.

    This is something that I’ve thought we should do for ages. It’s something that should just come standard on every new car. Yes, they are fairly easy to bypass, but the vast majority of drunk drivers don’t want to drive drunk, they just don’t realize that they are driving drunk.

    It needn’t be mandatory though — it could be encouraged with an insurance discount, or a tax rebate.

    One thing I am sure of is that our guide on public policy shouldn’t be the generation that’s eating Tide Pods.

    I’ve seen this from several of the far right here in the last day or so, and I just have to stare agape that *this* was the best talking point you idiots could find.

  25. Gustopher says:

    We don’t even find schools enough to give them proper school supplies in a lot of cases. Where is the money for all these guns and all this training going to come from?

    And what’s more likely — a mass shooter coming to a particular school, or one of the teachers’ guns getting loose?

  26. michael reynolds says:

    You are unfit to write here. You slime traumatized children. You are an acknowledged racist. You should be banned.

    I never approve of banning except in extreme circumstances, but that applies here. I call on James Joyner to ban you and JKB for your role in repeating vile lies about children who’ve survived a massacre.

    As for the rest of us, we should shun these two entirely as the scum they are.

  27. Gustopher says:

    How about school uniforms, featuring body armor?

  28. mattb says:


    We don’t even find schools enough to give them proper school supplies in a lot of cases. Where is the money for all these guns and all this training going to come from?

    This is worth repeating. Beyond paying for the instructional aspect of training and the weapons, there is the entire issue of ammunition. It ain’t cheap. And if you want your teachers to be keeping their skills sharp, that means routine range work and that’s a lot of money spent on more ammunition.

    Do we really want bullets prioritized over school supplies?

    BTW, as an aside, was the tax credit for School Supplies cut from the final tax bill?

  29. Franklin says:

    @Jake: Trucks, airplanes, and kitchen knives aren’t designed first and foremost to kill people as fast as possible. They serve actual useful purposes. When will you and your dumb friends who repeat the “why don’t they ban X?” argument ad nauseam realize that?

  30. EddieInCA says:

    So let me get this straight…

    We’re going to arm teachers, most who are females and average 5-5, 150 pounds, in confined rooms with emotional teenagers, most which could easily overpower said teacher and take the gun away?

    What could go wrong?

  31. Franklin says:

    @Jake: Almost forgot the other stupidity of your argument. There are any number of things that kill people. Just because we can’t easily fix some of those things doesn’t mean we shouldn’t fix the others.

  32. michael reynolds says:

    Anyone with the least imagination would quickly realize just how impossibly stupid this idea is. If you tried to write it as a scene it would instantly fall apart.

  33. James Pearce says:


    I’ve seen this from several of the far right here in the last day or so, and I just have to stare agape that *this* was the best talking point you idiots could find.

    This is why I propose dropping all talk of “common sense gun control measures.” These people do not have common sense.

    I say we demand the full repeal of the 2nd amendment, decades in the future if necessary, only accepting “common sense gun control” as a compromise. The time for half-measures –banning bump stocks or expanded background checks– is over. Be a gun grabber, and do it shamelessly. If they insist we take it from their cold dead hand, we take it from their cold dead hand.

    Who’s with me?

  34. Gustopher says:


    Don’t forget both Reagan and Brady were shot despite being surrounded by armed and trained Secret Service agents.

    Were Reagan and Brady armed? No?


  35. James Pearce says:


    Britain has banned everything but rocks and pointy sticks already, and their violent crime rate is soaring.

    HAHAHA. Yeah, knife crimes are up 13% this year.

    Violent crime rates are soaring! (Any ideas on why the crime rate in UK might be soaring? Is it perhaps the imminent post-Brexist lower standard of living?)

  36. Modulo Myself says:


    The gun nuts are imagining coaches. You know, responsible Republicans like Dennis Hastert.

  37. Dave Schuler says:

    If they had armed my school teachers, I wouldn’t be here to tell the tale.

  38. TM01 says:

    Can we start by removing the armed details from the children of politicians?

    Let’s talk about the military not submitting names to the background database.
    Let’s talk about about Broward County policy of not ever calling the police on students, which keeps them out of said database.

    Your causes can’t see their effects.

    You don’t care about, and totally ignore, the effects of your policies.

    Because they are Always Right.

    Because you know SO much more than those mouth breathing rubes out there in flyover country.

    So it MUST be something else.

    So instead you focus on an inanimate object, then go ahead and pat yourselves on the backs, telling yourselves you’d Done Something.

    You jackasses even manage to blame Brexit. How totally fscked up are you people?

  39. Jen says:

    This is one of the dumbest ideas in the gun debate, and yet it comes up every time there’s a school shooting. It’s on the level of “let’s have a unicorn in every classroom”-level dumb.

    Most teachers I know don’t want to be armed in school–even the ones who have guns/shoot for sport or go hunting. It’s just not conducive to a learning environment to be thinking about which student you might have to save and which one you might have to shoot.

    What if you can’t get to 20% with volunteers? Will teachers be compelled to do this? Which ones? I’m sure at least some teachers are on medications–will they be required to disclose this? How much training will we require? How often? WHO the heck is going to pay for all of this? If a gun accidentally discharges, what is the school’s liability vs. the teacher’s? In fact, what if a teacher is responding to an actual threat and a stray bullet hits an innocent student? Will the teacher be accountable, or is the school then at fault?

    I could go on and on but you get the point. This is a stupid idea. STUPID.

  40. Leonard says:

    @James Pearce:


    “68,968 robbery offences, up 29%
    138,045 sex offences, up 23%
    37,443 knife crime offences, up 21%
    1,291,405 violent crime offences, up 20%”

  41. James Pearce says:

    @Leonard: The UK is about to enter a period of economic and social decline because of Brexit and you don’t have to be Nostradamus to predict that crime rates are going to rise.

    What’s funny to me is the concept of “knife crimes.” Here in the US, all the “knife crimes” are committed with guns, and you don’t get arrested for brandishing a knife.

    You get shot.

    The UK hasn’t had a school massacre since Dunblane.

  42. Just Another Ex-Republican says:

    It’s the Dirty Harry fallacy, and it’s rooted in pure faith, not logic. My own father is a very smart man. Multiple degrees, a very successful work career that ended up as a senior VP at a major bank with hundreds of employees and budget responsibility for hundreds of millions before he retired (and no, he wasn’t a pointy haired boss 🙂 ). And yet the last time we spoke about guns was after the Aurora theater massacre, where he was utterly CONVINCED that if only someone like him had been there, at midnight in a dark theater, with chaos and screaming and a killer in body armor, that he (and his at the time 70 year old eyesight and dexterity) would have been able to shoot him down and stop the tragedy before it got so bad, and that somehow the cops would know not to shoot or arrest him when they got there.

    At some point guns in this country turned into a religion for too many people, and it’s pointless to argue with religion–their faith just makes them dig in harder. And absolutely nothing will change their mind until it impacts them personally. And probably not even then.

  43. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:


    It was a complete waste of time. Like all gun control is.

    Well yes, it is a waste of time…unless you want to save lives, that is.
    What a maroon.

  44. James Pearce says:


    You jackasses even manage to blame Brexit. How totally fscked up are you people?

    No, Brexit was blamed for the increase in UK “knife crime.”

    The gun massacres in the US? That’s all on the 2nd amendment absolutists on the right.

  45. Jake says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:

    Saving lives doesn’t make it to the news. Guns save more lives then you think.

  46. de stijl says:

    @Modulo Myself:

    The gun nuts are imagining coaches. You know, responsible Republicans like Dennis Hastert.


    If it were in my power to grant you a million up-votes right now for that comment, I would do so.

  47. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:

    @Just Another Ex-Republican:

    would have been able to shoot him down and stop the tragedy

    A friend of mine is a Repo-Man. Been shot at numerous times. Every time this comes up he laughs, and talks about how difficult it is to hit someone who is moving, when you’re moving. This is just an amazing long-con by the NRA.

  48. de stijl says:


    Hey! [waves hand]

    Remember me?

    I busted you last night for plagiarism.


  49. Daryl's other brother Darryl says:


    Guns save more lives then you think.

    But no where near as many as the NRA has told you to think.

  50. James Pearce says:


    Guns save more lives then you think.

    Guns in the hands of trained professionals with the legal authority to use them (ie cops) save lives.

    If you want to examine the “good guy with a gun” myth, look at the story of Chris Kyle. Super-competent with weapons. Believed “guns save lives” to the point of taking troubled vets out to the range for therapeutic reasons. Knew his murderer was bad news, had a gun on his person, was perhaps the baddest dude to ever hold a weapon, and he was still gunned down by a psycho.

    If Chris Kyle, the prototypical “good guy with a gun,” can’t save his own life, why do you think a Spanish teacher (or any other teacher) can save the lives of an entire classroom?

  51. de stijl says:


    Where did you steal that comment from?

  52. de stijl says:

    @Daryl’s other brother Darryl:

    A friend of mine is a Repo-Man.

    Does he, perchance, work for the Helping Hand Acceptance Corporation? 😉 Was he trying to repo a ’64 Chevy Malibu?

    Harry Dean Stanton rocked it out in that movie. Even Emilio Estevez wasn’t flat-out horrible, which is odd; his proto-Keanu vibe actually worked in that role. And OMG didn’t he look exactly like his dad circa Apocalypse Now back then?

  53. James Pearce says:

    @de stijl:

    Even Emilio Estevez wasn’t flat-out horrible, which is odd

    I miss Emilio Estevez, specifically his laugh.

    I didn’t realize how much I missed his laugh until I re-watched Young Guns and the Breakfast Club a few weeks ago. I would trade all the comic books movies for one where Emilio Estevez laughs.

  54. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    @al-Ameda: No, I think elementary and middle school students should be included. They have such good impulse control at that age and giving them the ability to kill their peers would only make the impulse control training the special needs students get more real world. And I know what I’m talking about because I’m a retired teacher. MAGWA!

  55. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    Serious this time. The school I taught at last Friday had a 4-hour lock down. The students handled the situation with maturity, but as the lock down continued, tempers and psyches became frayed. I turned out that the gun in question was an Airsoft gun with it’s markings removed (why people do that is beyond me) and was said to have looked real (I didn’t see it).

    Now, add to Friday the following scenario: an armed teacher is sent into the hallways to “assist” the police in resolving the situation. According to the model presented at the WH “listening session” (BTW, that’s so cute, imagining that Trump listens), that teacher’s mission is to stop the suspect from killing anyone, including himself. If the teacher encounters the suspect first and the suspect points the weapon at the teacher…

    …well, as other have said above, “what could possibly go wrong?”

  56. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:


    Stop and think about who you had as teachers in high school. Did you want to trust them with a weapon and your safety?

    Well, I probably would have. Then again, I graduated in 1970, and most of my teachers were WWII and Korea veterans, leaned fairly relentlessly to the left, and would probably have greeted the suggestion with “Are you nuts?! The last thing you want to do is put a gun in my hands with the students I’ve got.”

    But things were different then.

  57. Just 'nutha ig'nint cracker says:

    ” Why do so many people think just having a gun will magically solve a problem? I’ve never understood this.”

    A gun doesn’t magically solve a problem; it makes the problem go away–in a body bag. Why people think this is a solution is the mystery to me.

  58. Lynn says:

    @al-Ameda: ” any 15 , 16, or 17 year old teen age boy”

    boy or girl, please 🙂

  59. de stijl says:

    @Just ‘nutha ig’nint cracker:

    An Airsoft product with the orange barrel extension removed or painted over is virtually indistinguishable from the firearm it is modeled after.

    If you Google images of “airsoft vs real gun” you can see what I’m talking about.

  60. de stijl says:


    boy or girl, please

    And for Moloch’s sake, don’t just blindly issue the boys the spiky “scary” black guns and make the girls carry the cute curvy Hello Kitty guns with the pink grips. That’s just insulting.

    If we are going to forcibly arm our adolescents at least give them an aesthetic choice. If a boy wants to pack an adorable S&W M&P 9MM bedazzled with pink rhinestones in a re-purposed iPhone ‘My Little Pony’ after-market wristlet, that is his damned choice.

    If a girl wants a matte Sig Sauer P226 Legion RX Full-Size, let her have it.

    We’re forcing tweens and teens to be our front-line first responders, so let’s let them be their true selves via aesthetic expression.

    Frankly, a bullet does not care if it is fired from a uber-butch “boy” gun, or from a mega-adorable “girl” gun. A bullet has one job and that job does not include wondering about the firearm which fired it or who pulled the trigger.

  61. de stijl says:

    @James Pearce:

    What’s in the trunk? Seriously, dude, what you got in the trunk?

    I never knew this until just now. (Well, maybe I’d forgotten – it came out in ’84. That was many brain cells ago.) The executive producer for Repo Man was Michael Nesmith from The Monkees.

  62. Scott F. says:

    @James Pearce:

    During recent Active Shooter Training at my work, the instructor told us the hit rate for policemen in the field was under 20%. Trained and practicing officers miss their target 4 out of 5 shots they take.

    On what planet would teachers do even that well?

  63. Jen says:

    @Scott F.: If the good guys with guns even respond.

    Again, this is the very dumbest idea out there and yet it gets trotted out every. single. time.

  64. de stijl says:

    @Scott F.:

    Ever since No Child Left Behind teachers have become masters at making sure that any tests that are required of them will be passed.

    Instead of establishing and nurturing the love of learning, we now teach to tests.

    If teachers were required to maneuver on a moving walkway while hitting a moving target with 25% accuracy, they will do it.

    It may take a few “in service” days per semester, but they’ll get there eventually.

  65. al-Ameda says:


    boy or girl, please

    Sorry, duly noted.

    Quick question:
    Have ANY women or girls been involved in any of the recent mass shootings? Adam Lanza, Dylan Roof, Stephen Paddock, Omar Mateen, Devin Kelly … they’re all disaffected boys/men.

  66. Lynn says:


    “The statistic shows the number of mass shootings in the United States between 1982 and 2017, by gender of the shooter(s). Between 1982 and 2017, 2 mass shootings were initiated by female shooters, 92 by male shooters. The mass shooting in San Bernardino on December 2nd 2016 was the only instance in which both a male and female were the shooters.”

  67. Lynn says:

    @de stijl: “And for Moloch’s sake, don’t just blindly issue the boys the spiky “scary” black guns and make the girls carry the cute curvy Hello Kitty guns with the pink grips. That’s just insulting”

    Damn straight!

    Do you know how hard it was for me to find weightlifting gloves with no pink on them?

  68. Mikey says:

    @de stijl: Eyes melt, skin explodes, everybody dead…

  69. Liberal Capitalist says:

    As an aside… One of the things that is often said by experts is “glad that they only used an AR-15… it could have been worse.”

    Don’t get me wrong, the AR-15 is a pretty devastating human killing machine, amiright?

    But the current popularity is based on “fame” of other mass murders and availability (cost as low as $600). I mean, you go with what you know, right? and the AR-15 gets all the press.

    Imagine instead the FN P90
    * 50 round capacity
    * short compact design (20 inches)
    * very low recoil, can be made fully automatic
    * ambidextrous design (Have two! twice the fun)

    I mean, the sci-fi like design and the knowledge that over 40 countries use this as a tactical assault weapon would make this a real crowd killer. None of that fake “old west” or “back in Nam” design influence for this killer.

    If Ripley had this bad boy, there would have only been one Alien film!

    Just look how fast you can get 50 rounds out at your target(s):

    I suggest that this is what the Teachers carry… it will fit in a backpack, like a laptop!


    (Why? Because if you are suggesting to arm teachers as a solution, this is where we are going. F’ing morons.)

  70. Hal_10000 says:

    Here’s the thing:

    These incidents are, thankfully, rare. We have literally a million schools in this country and the odds of an active shooter appearing at one are very very tiny. I realize that’s cold comfort to the victims of these incidents but the fact is that children are still safer at school than they are just about anywhere else (and are safer than they were twenty years ago).

    In light of that, any policy designed to stop mass shootings is unlikely to work very well. You might reduce the odds of one slightly. But then you have to ask .. at what cost is that slight improvement? Is it worth it?

    If the improvement comes at little cost or with some side benefits — more counseling an mental health services, for example — go for it. In the case of armed teachers, I have to say, “no”. The odds that a teacher will misuse a gun or that the gun will be stolen or lost or used to shoot a student who’s not dangerous seem much higher than the odds that it will stop that one-in-ten-million mass shooter. Hell, we’ve been putting police officers in schools for a couple of decades. They’ve stopped very few mass shootings but they’ve managed to beat-up, body slam, brutalize and arrest plenty of teenagers for being … well … teenagers. And do we even need ask the predominant skin color of those teenagers the SRO’s decide is a problem? It’s bad enough that we’ve got cops gunning down a thousand people a year; we don’t need teachers getting in on the act.

    I don’t necessarily oppose allowing conceal-carry permit holder to carry on campus in limited circumstances. But the idea that this is some kind of solution to school shootings is a bit of a stretch to say the least.

  71. Jim Brown 32 says:

    @Hal_10000: Unfortunately facts like frequency and comparative context make little difference to either conservatives or liberals when it comes to issues they are passionate about. The same plausible slippery slope arguments about abortion to liberals all of a sudden become irrational when made by conservatives about guns.

    Legislation is not the best tool to reduce an already rare occurrence. I’ve said before that the number of school shooting fatalities on average is in par with lightning fatalities per year. It’s just not something that happens alot. Even expanding the scope to mass shootings…it’s equal to flood, heat, and wind storm fatalities for the year on average.

    The point is not to say do nothing, but to inject a sense of realism into a conversation dominated by the language of desperation and now…which usually lead people down a false path. The media does this to people…there are African-Americans like myself today that honestly believe police killings of Black men are an existential threat to our survival as a people. Out of the millions of Black folks, hundreds of thousands of police interactions, and dozens of Black men who unfortunately met the wrong cop on the wrong day…we are in danger of being annihilated??? Unfortunately the sense of desperation generated by sincere conviction of impending peril cause some fragile people to do terrible things to police officers.

    Let’s be honest, school shooters are teenage white males with probably 9-10 other things in common…(anti-depressants)? Lets discover what that profile is and build some interventions and regulationsion that targets that pool of kids.

    Liberals like to cite countries that have less guns and less violence…but not societies that are more gun-dense with less violence. Something is afoul in the relationship our society has with its teens and young adult males. That’s the root cause that needs addressing.

  72. mattb says:


    I don’t necessarily oppose allowing conceal-carry permit holder to carry on campus in limited circumstances.

    Honestly, I don’t have an issue with this either, but there is a big “BUT” to my support. I believe that far more training should be necessary to get a pistol and/or concealed carry permit — including hands on training and some form of legitimate pass/fail test.

    The overall lack of gun training to get or maintain a license and the variance in requirements from state to state is a huge issue (especially as there’s a push for cross-state reciprocity).