Teachers shouldn’t have to carry weapons in school

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Teachers shouldn’t have to carry weapons in school

Jenna Robinson

Jenna Robinson

Jenna Robinson

Jenna Robinson

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The ongoing debate regarding gun control has recently exploded — especially in the media — after the shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., on Wednesday, Feb. 14.

One of the topics that has been avidly discussed is the idea of arming teachers.

President Donald Trump showed his full support to this idea after tweeting on his Twitter account: “Armed Educators (and trusted people who work within a school) love our students and will protect them. Very smart people. Must be firearms adept & have annual training. Should get yearly bonus. Shootings will not happen again – a big & very inexpensive deterrent. Up to States.”

Since the Columbine High School massacre in 1999, school shootings have become more common. According to CNN there has been at least 14 school shootings in 2018 as of March 8.

As a junior in high school, I don’t feel as safe at school anymore, but arming my teachers would only make me feel less secure.

On average in Michigan, a public school teacher will make between $36,620 and $61,978, depending on their experience, according to michiganradio.org. Also, the current debt in the United States is over $20 trillion — and rising — as shown on the U.S. Debt Clock.

So who is going to pay for these teachers’ weapons and continuous training?

To cut teachers pay even more or add to our nation’s debt hardly seems like the right answer — if there was a right answer to begin with.

Since I am currently in high school, I have come to learn the average mentality and maturity of a high school student.

Yes, hypothetically the teacher could keep the weapon in a locked drawer, but there is always the possibility of the teacher forgetting to lock it up correctly or a student breaking into the safe to get the gun.

Personally, I would feel on edge sitting in a room full of teenagers with a gun thinking it would be funny to joke around with it.

Having multiple guns in a school is simply asking for something bad to happen.

The extra responsibility and mental strain that would be put on a teacher would be extreme.

When thinking logically, it’s easy for people to say what they would do or how brave they’d be in a scenario like a school shooting. But when it’s actually happening and adrenaline is pumping, mistakes are bound to happen.

By the time a teacher would unlock the safe, get the gun, and load the gun, the potential threat could already be in the room.

Also, as the teacher is retrieving the gun, a student could take the gun — whether it be them trying to play “hero” or causing harm themselves — and potentially hurt more students or school faculty. A teacher could also panic and accidentally injure someone who isn’t the attacker.

We would be asking a teacher to be OK with taking the life of a child.

We are asking them to see someone that they know — and most likely watched grow up — and be able to hold up a gun and kill them.

Yes, right now people can say they could do that no problem, but in the moment, right when it comes down to it, not many people could look at someone and pull the trigger.

I find it terrifying that this idea has even surfaced as a real option, the concept is asinine. Fighting violence with violence and arguing over the dangers of guns while bringing in more guns is not the answer.

We should have more security guards, metal detectors, and police patrolling the school grounds.

We should have bullet proof doors and mental health classes.

However, we should not bring guns into the classroom.

Emma Gonzalez, a senior at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, gave an empowering speech on Feb. 17 regarding the shooting at her school, the lack of action in government, and the issue of gun control.

At one point in her speech, Gonzalez quoted something she read in the point of view of a teacher.

It read: “When adults tell me I have the right to own a gun, all I can hear is my right to own a gun outweighs your student’s right to live. All I hear is mine, mine, mine, mine.”

The lives of students are at stake, and I believe that adding more guns to a problem that was elevated by the use of guns is not the answer for our school or for our country.