Rep. Eric Watson's bill to arm and train "select" school personnel for anti-terrorist protection is the most myopic solution to the current panic over Columbine and Sandy Hook ever uttered. You can't keep guns out of a school boy terrorist's hands, no matter how stringent legislation becomes. You can't prevent them from already knowing the layout of schools they've previously attended. You will not prevent them from knowing just who, exactly, the gun-toters are and single them out first. Just like police, the damage will have been done by the time they get there.
This is being reactive. We need to be pro-active.
Start with locking doors and monitoring them with CCTV. Parking lot monitoring as well. Mentoring programs with faculty and peers for those who seem disassociated in any way. But none
of these will work today or tomorrow. It will take structured and consistent parenting for an entire generation to arrive back at the individual mores we are all desperate for. Society must realize that no matter what implement of destruction employed, man is the most destructive animal of all, and until our youth finds a means to re-direct their adolescent anger these problems will not only continue but they will flourish.
Training teachers in advanced counter-terrorism is not only foolish but impractical. I want to meet the dedicated lifelong educator who is so well trained with a handgun that he or she is willing to shoot through a child to get to the terrorist. Or worse, shoot the child and miss the terrorist. Teachers don't have enough time to grade the papers they have, much less spend 2-3 hours on the range every week practicing terrorist take-down.
So many are concerned about guns in the home when the number of binary agents in the home (stable when used alone but reactive when another chemical agent is mixed with it) is countless, public knowledge, available on the Internet and can be many times more destructive than any rifle or handgun.
Most of us remember a time not too long ago when a carload of post-curfew teens missed a curve on Hixson Pike and were killed. The city was lobbied to have the speed-limit changed, the road re-surfaced and traffic cameras installed, all because parents could not come to grips with the fact that their children had not illustrated the good judgment they had attempted to instill within them. It wasn't the road surface, weather conditions or time of night. It was all judgment, or lack thereof. Being a good citizen demands being there, being conscientious role models and correcting misconceptions. Rep. Watson, this is grand-standing without any realistic expectation of change.
David D. Fihn, Sr.