Donald Trump can’t go a single day without being mentioned in the news and many times it is his own doing but the media has to carry its share of the blame. with that being said what did the Donald do this time? Well Trump recently came under fire for suggesting that the solution to the gun problem in schools is more guns, specifically arming teachers. There are so many reasons why arming teachers isn’t the clear cut answer or response we need at this time. From the countless stories of teachers and educators being sexually or romantically involved with students to teacher differences that aren’t settled professionally. Giving potentially more nutty people guns to combat gun violence is a recipe for a descent into anarchy.
But after coming under fire for that proposal, Trump did what any self respecting adult president would do… he doubled down on his idea and gave reasoning supporting his standpoint. In pandering to the dumbest of veterans with a show of respect and honor Trump suggested that veterans-turned-teachers could be armed because of their service experience. He also mentioned that only “the best” teachers would be armed and rambled standard bullet points favoring his stance.
Anything out of Trump’s mouth could sound promising and encouraging but he has openly stated he stands by nothing he says. In theory he may spew out some gems but herein lies the problem.
Starting with the veterans. How many veterans are teachers? What is the distribution of those teachers among the public school system nationwide? High school? Middle school? Elementary school? Do alternative schools and vocational schools get it too? Many questions arise. Well let’s try and seep through the swamp.
In 2014, the Veterans Administration (VA) reported that 22 million Americans were veterans. That figure was based on data they collected along with data from the Department of Defense (DoD), the United States Census Bureau, the Internal Revenue Service, and the Social Security Administration. Additionally, the DoD reported in 2015 1.4 million active military personnel. Combined, the figures add up to 7.3% of Americans who have served in the military at any point in their adult lives.
In a USA Today report:
Education organizations don’t track the number of veterans going into teaching, but Teach for America (TFA), which began in 1990 as a way to lure Ivy League and other top-tier college graduates into needy urban and rural schools, has seen a fourfold increase in military candidates since 2009. Last fall, its cadre of servicemembers-turned-teachers grew to about 100.
But we still need a better picture of how many veterans are out there teaching. Another organization that transitions soldiers from the battlefield to the classroom is Troops to Teachers (TTT). Since being established in 1993, Troops to Teachers has turned out 20,000 teachers through both traditional and alternative routes to certification. TTT is just one organization that helps convert veterans into teachers. Further scouring of the internet revealed little else in regards to the number of teachers.
Moving on to the “very best” comment by Trump. In his eyes, only the best teachers would be armed. How do you qualify “best” in this scenario? Decorated, awarded, credentialed teachers who display an exemplary proficiency with a side arm? You have decorated, seasoned and honored and well recognized police officers who manage to bungle traffic stops, prisoner transport, in-processing and booking, and the list goes on. But what better example to use than former BSO deputy Scot Peterson who froze during an active shooter situation in Parkland, Fl? Was he not the best? If not, then why does he have a gun? Why do we trust him with an instrument of life and death? If a trained police officer failed to engage the shooter, why should it be expected, be the norm for a teacher, someone who took classes and got certified to teach, to engage in urban warfare? Cops actually receive extensive training on how to use their firearms, how to assess threats, and how to deescalate situations, and yet they still murder innocent civilians all the time. Civilians are not allowed to discharge their weapons in public places except in the most extreme of circumstances, but cops are allowed to pop a cap in anything that frightens them. Now a teacher will be able to as well.
*** Breaking News ***
This just in, more than one BSO deputy did not enter the school during the Valentine’s Day Massacre in Parkland. CNN is reporting that three more deputies are being implicated in their inaction to neutralize and engage Cruz, the Parkland shooter. Their actions reportedly shocked police from Coral Springs, who joined the sheriff’s deputies soon after they arrived reports Raw Story.
So let’s arm the teachers right?!
Again, adding more guns to the mix makes for one spicy meatball. We have a gun problem. Throw more guns at the problem. By this logic, we need to arm more employees at movie theatres, bartenders in night clubs, patrons at concerts and more. We NEED MORE GUNS!
And one side note!
Once again, only the best teachers would be armed right? What does that say for law enforcement? It’s well documented in multiple news outlets that police regularly turn away the best and brightest and settle for the easily manipulated. But they get to carry guns though… right?