Thursday, December 20, 2012

No Guns for This Teacher, Not Now, Not Ever

(The following is my next Huffington Post blog.)

The NRA should be proud of me.

In my inappropriately named novel No Child Left Alive, a second year teacher in a dysfunctional public high school begins carrying a handgun to class after a near-rape incident.

Recent events have led me to believe that I am not cut out to be a novelist. In my book, the authorities frown on teachers with guns.

In real life everyone from Texas Gov. Rick Perry to Missouri State Representative Mike Kelley, R-Lamar, is not only sounding the drumbeat for arming our teachers, but they are almost making us feel ashamed if we are not fully prepared to bring our guns and blow the heads off any intruders. Not even the death of 20 schoolchildren at Sandy Hook Elementary School is making a dent in the minds or hearts of some of those who serve us.

Forget any efforts to curb the proliferation of the kinds of weapons that would have made our Founding Fathers skip directly from the First Amendment to the Third. Forget a reversal of the drastic cuts that have allowed so many Americans in desperate need of mental health care to slip through the cracks.

As usual, when it comes to public schools, it all comes down to the teachers, as far as our state and national legislators are concerned. Forget funding for additional resource officers for our schools; forget reasonable limitations on the kinds of weapons that no civilian needs to own. Forget about a common sense solution to the epidemic of violent movies and video games that besiege our young from infancy.

Those things appear to be extraneous to those who represent us. Let the teachers carry guns and our elected officials can sit back, collect their campaign contributions from the National Rifle Association and wait until the next time a gunman strikes terror into a community.

When I have written about the problems with guns in our society, I am usually swamped, nearly immediately, with knee jerk responses. You know the ones:

-The killers go to schools, malls, movies, churches, etc., because they are gun-free zones. They don’t have to worry about someone returning fire. (Actually, they go to those places because that is where the people are. Most of these killers spend little time thinking about who might be carrying a concealed weapon.)

-If you criminalize guns, only the criminals will have guns. (Another weak argument. Few of the gunmen who massacred innocent people across this nation were criminals prior to their acts of violence.)

-And the worst one- Guns don’t kill people; people kill people. For once, I am inclined to agree with the heavy firepower enthusiasts on this one. It is people who kill people. And the ones who have been pulling the trigger have been the NRA’s legislative lapdogs, crying wolf every time someone mentions curbing high-powered weapons and acting like government storm troopers will be knocking on the door any minute to get your handguns and hunting rifles. Instead of working to keep people from obtaining the type of weaponry no one needs for protection, they are carving out one protection after another for gun owners, proposing and often passing bills that make it easier for one human being to kill another and never face any scrutiny over that death.

I am proud to be a schoolteacher and I put the education and safety of the children who sit in my classes above all else.

That being said, I am not going to carry a gun to my classroom, not now, not ever. I will do my utmost to provide my students with a quality education and do whatever I can to help them succeed in life.

The job of making sure our children’s educational needs are being met, and doing whatever we can to contribute to their mental, emotional, and physical security, is one teachers meet every day.

Adding more guns to schools in an effort to stem the tide of violence that is overwhelming this country is madness.

It was only a few years ago that the U. S. spent billions of dollars looking for weapons of mass destruction in every nook and cranny in Iraq.

Those weapons were never in Iraq; the weapons of mass destruction are sitting in Congress and in state legislatures across this nation.


Rick Nichols said...

I saw an "amusing" license plate in KCK yesterday. It said: BRKTCHR (translation - Broke Teacher). So I imagine that that guy won't be buying a high-dollar handgun anytime soon to better protect himself in the classroom.

Anonymous said...

If more guns are the answer to the gun problem then we should have more drugs for the drug problem and more cigarettes for the smoking problem .

Turner is one sick puppy said...

And you wonder why a number of us ordinary citizens don't want your kind teaching our children and deciding what rights we need to give up because you don't want for us to have them? To us, listening to your lies, is like listening to a criminal rationalization as to how you justify getting to do whatever you want to us.

Connecticut is a place with the kind of gun laws and taxes and beliefs that your kind would find more congenial than having to live here amongst us. That's why your kind needs to live with your own kind and to be sent away from those of us and our kind who believe in freedom for ourselves, alone. I don't have anything to do with what happened in Connecticut. I think what happened there is nothing more than one sick animal doing whatsoever it wanted to do to an entire herd of sick diseased animals that agreed that their misbegotten lives were valueless to any whackjob with the means to harvest them away whenever the mood took him. Thus what happened there has no more to do with me and mine than what happens in Mexico or Somalia or China or Africa someplace. I'm in no way responsible for what sick diseased animals do to each other way off where they live according to their own lights and rules. What works or doesn't work for them is of no account to me.

I look at your blog and there simply isn't any living in peace with you and your kind. Our children and tax dollars and freedoms don't exist for you to tell us what we need to do with them, or for you to get to decide on how we live our lives. There simply is no living with some self-righteous moralistic thief and tyrant wanting to tell us that they know what is best for us in a community which is alien to yourself. Soon the only solution which will work is for your separation or extermination in order to keep such as yourself from those of us wanting nothing to do with the likes of yourself.

Ron said...

My wife tells the story of the time one of her teachers started bringing a gun to school. I believe it was the Carthage Junior High School. Everyone knew the teacher was erratic and unstable (art teacher...go figure) and when a relationship went bad, she decided she needed to be armed at all times. School officials found out she had a gun in the classroom and got rid of her.

Anonymous said...

This one goes out to the one who has named them-self, "Turner is one sick puppy." I find it extremely offensive for you to say Mr. Randy Turner should be exterminated. I assume you call yourself an American, a true patriot? Some of the most unpatriotic things I have ever heard have just came from you. Turner is a former 8th grade teacher, I can say that my love and possible journalism career was fueled by him. He is a uniter, not a divider.

Anonymous said...

To the anonymous person who said Mr Turner should be exterminated: Give me one valid reason automatic or semiautomatic rifles are necessary in non-combat zones. Also, kill people who disagree with you, are you serious?

Anonymous said...

To the anonymous person who claims Mr Turner should be exterminated: Give one valid reason my automatic or semi-automatic weapons are necessary in a non-combat zone. Also, kill people who disagree with you? Are you serious. I will remain anonymous too in case wingnuts decide to come after me as well.