It’s no longer a matter “if” we should arm teachers.
Today, it’s about implementing armed teachers nationwide.
by John Boch
Remember when we had to fight state by state to educate people on the proven benefits and public safety associated with right-to-carry? Today we face similar battles when it comes to good guy guns in schools.
Yes, more and more larger schools across America have hired school resource officers (SROs). Bravo.
Even better though, more and more districts have students protected by civilian good guys with guns. Armed teachers.
Yes, even here in Illinois. Despite state laws against it.
After each school massacre, more and more people – including school staff – sought out training to defend themselves and their loved ones. Later, some of these school staffers started bringing their guns to school to protect themselves and their precious charges. .
Without a doubt, each knows that when seconds count, police are just minutes away.
And even in larger schools with SROs, we know that SROs have a bull’s-eye painted on their back. Simply take out the SRO with a blunt-force instrument and a baddie has a gun, a radio and keys to the kingdom. On the other hand, a discretely armed school staffer looks and acts just like one of the sheep until the wolf appears.
Recently, the Florida Sun-Sentinel published a damning time line of cowardice, ineptitude and political correctness that allowed one dysfunctional loser to murder so many in Parkland, Florida. (Read it only after you've doubled up on your blood pressure meds and have practiced your favorite deep relaxation technique.)
It didn’t have to be, though.
Some teachers say “Not on our watch”: Even in Illinois.
As I mentioned, some Illinois school staffers have decided that a school massacre will not happen on their watch – not unchallenged at least. We owe these private, selfless sheepdogs a great deal of gratitude for risking so much to protect our children.
Last year, at a debate I mentioned that I was aware of school staff members in McLean County who go to work armed. Contrary to Illinois state law, of course.
A Bloomington Pantagraph reporter called me the next day and almost begged me to put her in touch with these armed teachers. I simply laughed. “Why would they risk talking to you? They don’t owe you or anyone else an explanation of the obvious,” I told her.
Following that call, that same Pantagraph reporter telephoned every public and private school system in McLean County asking if they knew of any of their staff who carried in school. Of course, she might have had better luck asking about illicit drug use, marital infidelity or tax evasion among school staff members.
While these unsung, gun-toting heroes face only minimal criminal penalties if outed, the financial penalties could be devastating. They risk losing their jobs and pensions if discovered. In fact, even if they were to stop the next mass murderer, saving countless lives, they still might face the loss of their pension if they were not eligible to retire on the spot. “God bless Ms. Schoolmarm for shooting the killer. Too bad she got fired the next day.”
We owe them respect and gratitude. Each values the lives of their students and co-workers more than obeying the letter of a misguided law. Heroes one and all, just like those from another era who ignored evil laws and helped escaped southern slaves make their way north to freedom.
They are doing something that might save lives someday. As opposed to bleating the company line and leaving our precious children utterly defenseless and unprotected. Like the cowards in Broward.
While more and more states have taken action to legalize trained and licensed school staff to carry guns to protect our precious young people, other states like Illinois resist potentially life-saving change.
Should it surprise anyone? After all, Illinois needed a federal court to order it to adopt right-to-carry as the last state without it. Hopefully, we will not be the 50th state to allow guns in schools.
In the meantime, you can rest assured there are plenty of guns in the schools where our state’s leaders send their kids. Why can’t our kids be equally protected?