School security. People agree it’s important, but that’s about the only common ground. When it comes to the question of how, the gun control folks are at odds with the NRA-supported idea of having armed teachers. Bob Gualtieri, the sheriff of Pinellas County in Florida, used to be a person who was in the middle. He thought having armed officers on campus was a good idea, but wasn’t gung-ho about the prospect of armed teachers.
Recently, though, Gualtieri changed his mind. And the big thing that altered his opinion was the investigation into the Valentine’s Day school shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland, Fla. One particular aspect of that tragic shooting—where a madman armed with an AR-15 modern sporting rifle, was spraying bullets with wanton disregard for life on students and teachers—was the crux for the change in thinking. The gunman, Nikolas Cruz, apparently reloaded his rifle five times while a school resource officer was impotently waiting outside the killing zone. And that is exactly the kind of case wherein an armed teacher or other staff member could have stepped up to end the carnage earlier.
“We know from the history of these things that the majority are stopped by school personnel,” Gualtieri said in an Associated Press report. “People need to keep an open mind to it [arming teachers], as the reality is that is someone else in that school had a gun, it could have saved kids’ lives.”