A state legislator in gun-friendly Arkansas makes my point and the point of sensible South Dakota school superintendents—arming teachers turns schools into a shoot-'em-up battleground where teachers are more likely to get shot:
Sen. Jeremy Hutchinson, R-Benton, is interested in exploring whether state law allows school districts to make decisions on school safety. If a legal avenue does not exist, he hopes the Legislature will change the law.
After the shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, Hutchinson became interested in arming school personnel, he said. He was invited to attend an “active shooter” training and - using a rubber bullet-loaded pistol - he mistakenly shot a teacher who was confronting a “bad guy.”
The experience gave Hutchinson some pause, but he still supports giving schools the authority to decide how best to secure their campuses [Brenda Bernet, "School Districts Hoping to Keep Security Licenses," Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, 2013.008.28].
Senator Hutchinson's misfire and reaction thereto make two other compelling points:
- Even live, personal experience won't shake a good Republican's support for bad policy.
- That shooting a teacher only gives Hutchinson "some pause" demonstrates what Republicans really want to do with us teachers.
Now let us clarify: Hutchinson didn't really shoot a teacher, just a cop playing a teacher.
The first two simulations they were just all bad guys, and so we got used to running in, you’d go to the sound of the gunfire," said Hutchinson, explaining the different active-shooting scenarios he was put through. "And then they threw a twist in on the third one, where there was what appeared to be a bad guy in the hallway, shooting into the classroom. And so, just instinctively, I shot. And then I turned the corner and see that the bad guy that I had just shot was actually shooting with another bad guy, which kind of blew my mind for a second" [Josh Voorhees, "Lawmaker Who Wants to Arm Teachers Almost Learned Why That May Not Be Such a Good Idea," Slate, 2013.08.29].
Republican legislator "instinctively" shoots a good guy, and it "kind of" blows his mind... for a second. Ugh. There's no educating some people; there's only voting them out.