Debate time! Should teachers be armed in order to protect their students?

Discussion in 'Debate & Marathon Threads Archive' started by Caesar753, Jun 22, 2014.

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  1. Jerseygirlteach

    Jerseygirlteach Groupie

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    Jun 22, 2014

    Respectfully, I disagree. The exact question was:

    Should teachers be armed in order to protect their students?

    Either by force or not, I believe it is a question of whether it is our responsibility as teachers to arm ourselves to protect our students. If that is the question, my answer is still unequivocally no. There's a whole lot I am responsible for in terms of protecting my students and I am happy to do it. I will not carry a gun and potentially shoot people. Not now, not ever.
     
  2. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    I'm not against guns in general, but I wouldn't want teachers to be allowed carry them in schools. I would just feel uncomfortable with the thought that what if they have to use it, would they make the right decision? If they shot the intruder could they live with it?
    And then the accidents: what if they accidentally shot a student? What if a student go into her desk and got the gun, and all the other 'what if"s.


    However, all the school shootings are increasing every year and something must be done, I just don 't know what.
    We have 2 armed probation officers at school, I think I'll leave the gun business up to them,. I don't know for sure, but I wouldn't be surprised if my principal had a gun at school, she used to be a probation officer and it could be approved for her to have one, and it would make sense. But I might be wrong.
     
  3. 4815162342

    4815162342 Companion

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    I could definitely live with shooting/killing someone who was trying to murder innocent children.
    Just the same as I would live with shooting someone who was attacking my family via a home invasion or car jacking or whatever.

    The other thing is, I don't think the teachers would necessarily be "wearing" the guns out in the open. As I stated earlier, I get the points of not wanting teachers having the guns at school (and I'd probably never do it myself) but what if you never know they even have one?
     
  4. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    If you put a gun in a room with 30 children... the children will eventually know it's there, no matter how well you hide it.
     
  5. 4815162342

    4815162342 Companion

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    Jun 22, 2014

    So just for the love of debate, if you found out mid year that your daughter's teacher, who you both adore, was bringing a gun with her (or him) to school each day, would you pull your daughter out of the class?
     
  6. KinderCowgirl

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    They are trained in many more areas than just shooting a gun and that training is ongoing, they are required to pass tests regularly to make sure they can tell the difference between an unarmed bystander and a shooter. They are trained in negotiating situations with people, with crisis intervention. I also think they also get somewhat desenitized to the crime they witness. There's just no amount of training that could make me qualified to carry a gun on a school campus. None. Nor would I ever want that responsibility.
     
  7. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Yes. Yes I would. Without hesitation. And I suspect that most other parents at my school would do the same.
     
  8. KinderCowgirl

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  9. Pashtun

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    Jun 22, 2014

    My children would be gone from that class immediately.
     
  10. Linguist92021

    Linguist92021 Phenom

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    Jun 22, 2014

    I think I could live with killing a shooter who was there to harm my students. I'm pretty sure. But what is that shooter was one of my students? It wouldn't be that simple, it'll be harder to deal with it.
    And yes, I didn't think the teachers would carry the guns, the guns would be in the desk drawer, locked away. But if the students knew it was there, there would be problems, some would try to get it. Our kids are already really good at distracting the teacher so the others can get away with something,m these tactics would just increase.
     
  11. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    Jun 22, 2014

    Unless the teacher actually had a shoulder holster firearm at the ready, it might be a moot point. I keep thinking about the shootings at Fort Bragg. If any place would have people with weapons, it would be there, but there have been two mass killings anyway.

    ETA: I have been reminded that ONLY Military Police are permitted to carry weapons on military bases. My one housemate who was in the military was an MP, so it skewed my understanding of base rules.
     
  12. mmswm

    mmswm Moderator

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    A few points:

    Firstly, at no time did I compare the danger levels of teaching vs. police work. That one's a no brainer. My point was to show that the average police officer is not in danger every day, or even every year. There's an element that's always on their minds, but the reality is that police work is long stretches of utter boredom punctuated by brief periods of excitement. If an officer happens to be one of the very small minority of officers that wind up in gun fights, they know how to respond only because of the ongoing training and recertification they undergo every year, not because their day to day activities give them experience. There is absolutely no reason why anybody in any other profession who was willing to dedicate the same amount of time to training and recertification could not be equally as competent.

    To be very clear about my own opinions, I do not advocate the willy-nilly arming of just anybody in a school, however, I see absolutely no difference between a teacher who's undergone the same training, psychological background checks, and ongoing recertification and a School Resource Officer, who's days are no different than the teachers in their schools. The badge the SRO carries around doesn't give him any magical powers.

    One more point that I've avoided. I've was quite offended by the statement about "forgetting" one has a gun. One simply does not forget such a thing. Quite the contrary, somebody who's accustomed to carrying regularly who isn't carrying for whatever reason, tends to be unreasonably protective of the area where they normally holster their weapons. Ask anybody who knows me how difficult it is to sneak up behind me. It doesn't happen. While admittedly unscientific, this is the case with every single person I know who carries regularly. It's insulting to the huge number of responsible gun owners to insinuate that we're an irresponsible and unintelligent group, simply because we own guns.
     
  13. gr3teacher

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    Oh for cripes sake, nobody is calling gun owners irresponsible or intelligent. But put thirty children in a room, and eventually anybody's guard will let down for a second at some point, no matter how responsible or careful you are.

    I'm on my phone so I don't want to respond more to te rest of your points, but you're the one who brought up cops and how their job wasn't really that dangerous. You don't get to act indignant when people point out that it's still a lot more dangerous than the average teaching position.
     
  14. allaragallagher

    allaragallagher Comrade

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    Jun 22, 2014

    Finally turned into a debate and I'm stepping away because I am completely 100% for radical gun regulation in the U.S. :)
     
  15. ecteach

    ecteach Groupie

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    Jun 23, 2014

    Agree 100%.
     
  16. hbcaligirl1985

    hbcaligirl1985 Cohort

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    Jun 23, 2014

    No. So many things can go wrong. Teachers get pushed to the edge--that can end badly.

    Somehow--in my head--I can see me getting over powered by students who could take my gun. Giving a student a failing grade or detention would become all the more terrifying.
     
  17. 3Sons

    3Sons Enthusiast

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    Jun 23, 2014

    I would really rather teachers spend that time on lesson plans, grading, and the like. Police can devote the amount of time to gun training that they do precisely because it's a core requirement of their job.

    I also don't really want to read the headline about the police responding to a school situation and shooting a teacher because they thought the teacher was attacking the school.

    And as far as forgetting one has a gun, I think it happens:

    http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/29/business/tsa-is-finding-more-guns-at-airport-security-checkpoints.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    Note that later in the article, it notes that a police officer who responded to one incident accidentally fired the gun while trying to unload it.
     
  18. KinderCowgirl

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    Jun 23, 2014

    This is not how I want to be around my students. I want my whole focus to be on them and teaching them and not have to worry about a 5-year old innocently "sneaking up" on me. I know you are passionate about this, but I think most laypeople just don't want that responsibility in the classroom.
     
  19. 2ndTimeAround

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    I'm curious how you could guarantee such a thing. I think your opinion about guns and gun control might be coloring your perception.
     
  20. 2ndTimeAround

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    How? I have plenty of things in my room, see 100 kids a day and my students don't know about many of the items. Heck, it is usually halfway through the semester before they realize I have another door tucked in a corner. I can, with no hesitation, say that I could keep a gun hidden in my room with no problem.
     
  21. catnfiddle

    catnfiddle Moderator

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    If a teacher were to be allowed to carry a weapon in the classroom, it would be MUCH safer to have it locked and holstered on the teacher's person, not locked away somewhere else in the classroom. As a fellow faculty member, I would feel better knowing any weapons on campus are in immediate control of the experts trained to use them. Just as the school's resource officer wouldn't leave his or her weapon in a desk drawer, neither should those teachers who are entrusted and trained to carry. Students would have to physically touch the teacher and remove the safety to get access to the gun, which is an unlikely scenario.
     
  22. 2ndTimeAround

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    I think it would depend upon the classroom dynamics, catnfiddle. I know that my students, if they chose, could overpower me a lot more easily than they could break through a locked cabinet.
     
  23. dgpiaffeteach

    dgpiaffeteach Aficionado

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    I completely agree with this. I had a class this past year that was three varsity athletes and one girl. If those boys wanted my gun, they could easily overpower me. I would never be able to live with myself if my weapon was used to kill an innocent kid.

    I also don't think I could live with myself if I shot one of my own students, even if he or she was threatening other students.
     
  24. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    Yeah, just like you were saying to grade3..not sure how you could guarantee this.

    Once kids realize teachers can have guns in the classroom, I am willing to bet it becomes a game to find where it is at.
     
  25. Maryhf

    Maryhf Connoisseur

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    Jun 23, 2014

    I say this only half joking, but what about if we hire the armed personnel to work in the front office? They see/know everything that's going on, so they could race into action. and as a side effect, the angry, confrontational parents may second guess that trip to the school to yell at a teacher or admin.
     
  26. 2ndTimeAround

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    I can say it because the outcome depends upon only me.

    I'm not sure why you would think that students would ever know that I had a gun in my room. They don't know that I keep salt, tampons, lotion, a can opener and such in there.
     
  27. 2ndTimeAround

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    I think that would only work in schools where the front office is the only entryway.

    I'd hate to think that teachers were being armed to ward off angry parents.

    However, we did have a kidnapping case in my district. A biological father busted into the school, bypassed the front check-in and snatched his daughter from her first grade (maybe kindergarten) classroom. The teacher tried to stop him and got busted up in the process. The child did not know her father, the school did not know her stepdad WAS a stepdad and as far as they knew he was a total stranger snatching her way. He was able to get into his car and onto a major highway before getting caught.

    He had to have been watching her from afar and paid very close attention some how for him to know which classroom she was in. I imagine that in THAT case, if there had been armed guards up front he wouldn't have tried to pull that stunt.
     
  28. Pashtun

    Pashtun Fanatic

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    I am not sure how you can say this with confidence. The outcome does not depend entirely upon you.
     
  29. gr3teacher

    gr3teacher Phenom

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    Maybe it's different when they are younger, or when they are in your room all day, or maybe the GT program just leads to nosier children, but just as a case in point... my children today knew that I had a dustpan and brush underneath my sink. I myself did not actually have this knowledge.
     
  30. TamiJ

    TamiJ Virtuoso

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    I don't know that I am against teachers, in general, being armed (I don't know that I am for it either...honestly, I would really need to contemplate that one for a long while), but, as I already commented, I certainly would not feel comfortable being armed myself.
     
  31. HistoryVA

    HistoryVA Devotee

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    We have had classrooms broken into. We've had locked cabinets broken into, purses/phones stolen. Heck, a teacher at the next high school had his car stolen this year. A gun hidden in the classroom could be found. It's naïve to think it's not possible just because it hasn't happened in the past.
     
  32. bandnerdtx

    bandnerdtx Aficionado

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    Jun 24, 2014

    I've seen too many clandestine love affairs (some that have ended pretty horrifically) between teachers to want any easy access to a gun on campus.... Women in particular at most at risk for being shot by a lover/partner.:(
     
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