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Controversial gun debate: Arming our public school teachers?
December 19th, 2012
01:27 PM ET

Controversial gun debate: Arming our public school teachers?

As the nation moves away from the day 27 lives were forever changed by 20-year-old Adam Lanza in Newtown, Connecticut, - the question that remains is how do we prevent this horrific act from happening again.

Lanza first killed his mother in her home, then forced his way into Sandy Hook Elementary School, killing 26 people including 20 children, and finally taking his own life.

Should have Sandy Hook's teachers been armed?

Two CNN contributors wrote opinion pieces Wednesday on the controversial debate of arming public school teachers.

LZ Granderson writes that allowing concealed weapons in places like schools and churches would just result in more tragedy, not less.

William Bennett writes having armed and trained people could help protect schools and other vulnerable places from gun violence.

Tune to Erin Burnett OutFront at 7p and 11p ET on CNN.

Teachers with guns is a crazy idea

By LZ Granderson, CNN Contributor

I wish I were surprised that Texas Gov. Rick Perry doesn't see a problem with concealed weapons in schools, but after watching his failed bid for the presidency, the truth is there's very little that man can say that will truly surprise me.

"If you have been duly back-grounded and trained and you are a concealed handgun license-carrying individual, you should be able to carry your handgun anywhere in this state," Perry said at a tea party event held on Monday.

It seems his line of reasoning is in line with some of his gun-loving brethren who believe if teachers and principals are armed, tragedies like the one in Newtown would go away.

It's as if he thinks "Rambo" is a documentary.

In a country with fewer than 350 million people but more than 310 million guns, we don't need more of them. We need fewer. And when it comes to our schools, we don't need guns at all.

The case for gun rights is stronger than you think

By William J. Bennett, CNN Contributor

On NBC's "Meet the Press" this past Sunday, I was asked how we can make our schools safer and prevent another massacre like Sandy Hook from happening again. I suggested that if one person in the school had been armed and trained to handle a firearm, it might have prevented or minimized the massacre.

"And I'm not so sure - and I'm sure I'll get mail for this - I'm not so sure I wouldn't want one person in a school armed, ready for this kind of thing," I said. "The principal lunged at this guy. The school psychologist lunged at the guy. Has to be someone who's trained. Has to be someone who's responsible."

Well, I sure did get mail. Many people agreed with me and sent me examples of their son or daughter's school that had armed security guards, police officers or school employees on the premises. Many others vehemently disagreed with me, and one dissenter even wrote that the blood of the Connecticut victims was ultimately on the hands of pro-gun rights advocates.

To that person I would ask: Suppose the principal at Sandy Hook Elementary who was killed lunging at the gunman was instead holding a firearm and was well trained to use it. Would the result have been different? Or suppose you had been in that school when the killer entered, would you have preferred to be armed?

Evidence and common sense suggest yes.


Filed under: CT Shooting • Gun Control • Justice • News • Opinion
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