The commission to make schools safer from gun violence, backed by the National Rifle Association, just released their proposed safety recommendations. In a press conference held on April 2 Asa Hutchinson, a former GOP representative gave the details of the National School Shield Program. Details of the plan include training more school personnel to carry firearms.
The idea behind the National School Shield Program is to give adults access to guns. These adults would have to undergo a 40-60 training program. The hope is that an adult who possess a gun will have a greater opportunity to stop a mass shooting before police are able to arrive. There were a total of eight recommendations detailed in the report. The others include, enhancing training programs for school resource officers, and developing and online portal that would better gauge a schools current safety measures. The report is 225-pages long and was a response by the NRA after the tragedy in Newtown. Mark Mattiolli, who lost his son in the tragedy, was present today to back the proposals outlined in the report.
The highly controversial report calls for more guns on campus despite the fact that there is little proof that more guns equates to more safety. Gary Olson of Idaho State University who spoke to the Chronicle of Higher Education said, “there is no recorded incident in which a victim — or spectator — of a violent crime on a campus has prevented that crime by brandishing a weapon.” More guns on campus also creates an issue for police once they arrive, like “Which person with the gun is the bad guy?”
Firearms are not the great equalizer that Wayne LaPierre wants them to be. Studies show us that defensive gun use is the exception rather than rule. Owning a gun increases the risk of being shot. Being armed also increases our own paranoia about guns, including how we are able to accurately identify a weapon. More guns doesn’t mean that children or adults will be more safe, it just means there will be more guns. That’s something we all have to consider as we attempt to make schools a safer place for children and adults.