Sunday, January 27, 2013

Welcome to OK Corral Middle School. Our First Lesson Will Be On Dodging Bullets Fired by Ms Oakley Who May Be Experiencing Hallucinations While Trying To Stop a Killer in the School

Admonitions to Arm and Train Teachers and Other School Officials Ignores Problems Even Officers Have in Confronting Gun Threats

My first thought after reading a Swampland report on armed and trained officers and their experiences in confronting actual violence:

Yeah, lets not make teachers also do that job too, it will be dangerous for our children and for them.  And BTW, teachers already have a job for which they need all their attention:  TEACHING OUR CHILDREN!

Well trained and well armed police and other security professionals in specific careers in which they can expect some violence at any time, have trouble during encounters that should make voters think twice before supporting politicians who adopt a posture that teachers and other school officials can prevent gun violence at schools by taking a few hours of gun training and carrying or storing a loaded firearm on the job.

Time magazine's Swampland report with input from real security professionals shows how unrealistic the call from some to give teachers a gun and a few hours of training.

It's linked below.  But if you think they can just take repeated courses or something, remember what a teachers job is supposed to be about, teaching children, not trying to watch out for killers or trying to decide if someone needs to be "taken down".  Posturing Congress members or wannabes should be put on "Ignore".

If school security provided by armed guards is what people want they should be willing to pay more for the school districts to hire some.  Lets those local taxes go up.  Otherwise, teaching will become more about watching out for the next killer, rather than teaching impressionable young children that they can reach their potential and in that way reducing the number of those who might become killers out of despair, or outrage at lives that go nowhere.

We have enough of that second scenario in Chicago and other major cities where street violence is a massive problem that the gun lovers in Congress don't seem to care to help fix.

None of their white knights with guns have offered to patrol the ghettos where young black men are dying daily have they?

Better recording of who are the buyers and users of guns would help.  If a private seller knows that a gun he sells is going to be tracked person by person until the finger comes back to him as the last legal possessor of the gun that killed some family's breadwinner or a teenager in the street, that is going to cut down on those selling guns to shadowy unlicensed individuals for quick money.  If guns are stolen they should be reported as soon as the theft is discovered or the last legal owner should face at least a fine.

I checked out the other day and found that Jame Earl Ray's criminal history should have kept him from owning a gun legally-- at least in my state at this time, but since those providing his gun to him wouldn't be held accountable under even current law, no one needed to worry about that gun in his hands leading back to them.

The proposed gun law the Democrats want to pass would also have kept the gun out of the hands of  Sirhan Sirhan who shot Robert Kennedy too, even if he hadn't had a record, since he was not a US citizen, or it would have leed to the last legal owner and at least fined him for letting the gun slip into anonymous hands.

Those of us who get caught and fined for minor driving infractions know that fines keep climbing to help pay for cops on the beat to catch such behavior.  Maybe that's for the good, at least it gives some impetus for drivers to drive safely instead of endangering lives with every decision they make.

Amanda Ripley (in the Swampland article Your Brain in a Shootout: Guns, Fear and Flawed Instincts) puts together a lot of testimony from security professionals that show how difficult the job is.  It is not a hobby for an amateur any more than teaching reading, writing,  higher math and critical thinking, is a job for a retired cop without lots of training, and his or her complete attention on that task.

One excerpt for truly time pressed or those who won't just take 20 minutes to read it themselves.
In the New York City police department, for example, officers involved in gunfights typically hit their intended targets only 18% of the time, according to a Rand study. When they fired 16 times at an armed man outside the Empire State Building last summer, they hit nine bystanders and left 10 bullet holes in the suspect—a better-than-average hit ratio. In most cases, officers involved in shootings experience a kaleidoscope of sensory distortions including tunnel vision and a loss of hearing. Afterward, they are sometimes surprised to learn that they have fired their weapons at all.
Imagine, then, what a person trained only to shoot at a target is going to experience in such a situation.  Even if you play cops and robbers for a few days of training, it will be nothing like trying to actually stop a killer especially when there would be so many non shooters around, but you aren't sure who are and who aren't.  Add to that the fear that you could be hit at any second and your body and brain goes seriously out to lunch.  This is something I've been pondering ever since Wayne La Pierre made his infamous speech after the Newtown shooting, and indeed often thought about after mass shootings.  What would a person who is not fully immersed in the human control careers really do when confronted with a determined mass killer like A

The article also briefly brings up something I keep trying to get people to think about who figure arming themselves will turn them in to heroes in the face of  a mass shooting.  When the real cops arrive, on edge and worried about keeping the most people and themselves alive, what do you figure they are going to think of you standing there with your firearm(s) with people laying around and bleeding.   The actual bad guy is not going to be wearing a sign and probably has the presence of mind to kill himself, or hide, while you think your heroism will instantly be recognized, so you stand there with your trusty gun in a room with people laying on the floor.

Vegas wouldn't give you odds on getting out of that scenario unscathed, maybe even alive.

I believe that arming teachers is another way to get young, liberal, and less prejudiced women out of the profession, so children can be indoctrinated with beliefs that call for letting the poor and the old people die and lets have another war, as the billionaire backers of Republicans want them to be.  Call that spade a spade.  It's not about safety for your children, it's about their ideology.

And for that goal, your children's safety and well being can be flushed down the toilet (which, under Republican plans, your children can clean instead of a real professional who is trying to earn a living for his or her family).

Picture above appears to have been taken at the Boothill Graveyard in Tombstone Arizona and used via Creative Commons License Attribution (CC by 2.0) thanks to Flickr user WordRidden who has no connection to this blog or blogger.

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