American schools and their guns

Enough about Britain. Let’s have some news from the U.S., because there’s more than enough lunacy there to keep us bitterly amused. I know, I know, it’s a serious subject, but bear with me.

You’ve heard that the solution to school shootings is to arm teachers? Well, let’s check in on what happens when teachers are armed:

In Utah, a teacher shot herself in the leg in an elementary school toilet–or rest room, as we say in the U.S., because we may allow guns in our schools but we don’t allow loose talk about toilets. That sort of language reminds us of what we do with them–which is, generally, not shoot ourselves but get ride of bodily waste products (she said delicately). Or, to prove that I really would say shit if I had a mouthful, we shit and we pee.

The teacher had completed a gun safety course (which I’m guessing wasn’t long enough) and, you’ll be relieved to learn, was carrying the gun legally.

In Idaho, a professor shot himself in the foot while walking across campus.

In Minnesota, a third-grader reached over to a police officer’s holster and pulled the trigger on his (unless it was her–the officer was in possession of a gun but not of a pronoun). Should we start over? The kid shot the cop’s handgun. While it was in its holster and the cop was talking to the kids. The bullet went into the floor without passing through any flesh on the way. Likewise it did not pass Go or collect two hundred dollars. And if you’re a complete outsider to American (and I believe general English-speaking) culture, that’s an irrelevant reference to a board game.

Has Monopoly been translated into other languages and foisted off on the rest of the world?

And in Pennsylvania, a teacher in a small Christian school with one toilet that’s used by both staff and teachers put her handgun on the toilet tank while she used the restroom and then left without it. Four kids between the ages of six and eight used the, um, facilities before one of them reported it to his parents, who told a teacher, who presumably got it out of there safely.

So yes, arm the teachers. That’ll keep the kids safe.

135 thoughts on “American schools and their guns

      • That was funny as hell Ellen. I am a firearm owner but reluctant to have teachers armed as I do not believe it has been well thought out, however our Constitution gives us a right to keep and bear arms and even be stupid with them. Nothing we can do about stupid, that is forever, but ignorance we can educate. Not sure education would be of much benifit to those teachers, maybe they lost their licenses over their stupidity.
        I guess we can find all kinds of stupid but here it is stupid to not be armed to defend ones self, and family. We are loaded with predators who have guns as you can note and i for one refuse to be disarmed against all the stupid people who do stupid things. Ergo, pointing out three stupid acts does not preclude the right to keep and bear arms. There are far more episodes involving firearms which strongly suggest, imply, warrrent the need to be armed. I regret that Brittians have been disarmed. It is a shame.

        Liked by 3 people

          • Ellen, that is what you have to expect from gun owners. You have to have grown up with them or have had a sudden understanding that you instantly just have to have one, or two, or three. I started out just wanting one. A shotgun for home defense and its versitility for hunting from dear to birds of a feather. I have a sever time comprehending anti-gun persons. I wish to be open minded but the argument against them just does not hold water for me. Their rational is so full of holes that I cant stand it.

            Liked by 1 person

            • By way of background: I have owned a gun, although I sold it long ago. I’m not completely against them. But I value safety above guns, which is pretty much what some of the school kids are saying these days. Britain doesn’t ban guns, but it does put restrictions on them, just as it does on driving cars. It’s far a safer place than the U.S., and the British are heavily in favor of the way they deal with guns and baffled by the American approach. I’m basing that both on the people I talk to and polls I’ve seen.

              Liked by 1 person

    • Ha, ha, ha. That was funny as it was intended to be. He is an actor, a comedian. It is sad to believe someone with half a brain would try to use this as an example of anything other than comedy. Sad, just simply sad along with being deplorable.

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  1. You confirm my view on arming teachers with solid sources ! I taught for 31 years – some in a junior high school, In addition to such examples as you cited, there would also be terrific temptation to a) shoot the principal/superintendent/curriculum director or b) the kid in the back of the bus who has given you the finger as you stand out on bus duty EVERY SINGLE DAY !
    Do NOT arm the teachers ! Or the administrators (see above) OR the cooks, custodians, bus drivers…
    It also seems there WAS an armed sheriff’s deputy on duty at Parkland. The school’s security cameras showed him hiding behind a light pole in the parking lot.

    Liked by 8 people

    • Have to like your post. Your points are points of extended reality. How many teachers etc., would love to shoot an administrator. I always hated them because they treated us less than a junior high student, in fact, I think that is exactly what they thought of us and even less at times.
      Another reason to not arm teachers etc., is the LEO may not be able to sepearate the teacher from the shooter????

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  2. When I was in elementary school, a couple of kids had some sort of high-end firework rocket. They were suspended. Now we want to arm teachers. Some of the teachers I’ve known over the years are as scary as any student. I really hope this time the lawmakers get the message. (I’d also like perpetually sunny skies in Michigan.)

    Liked by 5 people

  3. James Corden spoke about the recent school mass-shooting on the CBS Late Late Show. The blurb to the YouTube clip of his comments says “James looks at measures other countries have taken to curb gun violence and wonders why Americans continue to refuse to make any changes.”
    I didn’t watch the clip, but I read a sample of the (2,534) comments posted on the YouTube page and, as a UK citizen, I was saddened to see the outrage of US viewers who disagreed with what James had said. And most of the commenters who don’t live in the US were (like me) utterly bewildered as to why anyone would want to fix the problem by giving teachers guns, and why the pro-gun people refuse to accept that what other countries have done – strictly control the ownership of guns – actually works.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Periodically, some British friend will ask us to explain the American thing about guns. The best I’ve been able to do is just say, “We’re insane on the subject.” It doesn’t explain much, but neither does anything I’ve been able to say. Except–well, yes, I do talk about the NRA and its political donations. That explains a lot.

      Liked by 4 people

  4. I keep trying to convince myself that surely the pendulum must swing at some point. The difficult question is WHEN? Typically the Donald suggested it was all a mental health issue and then you realize this administration has drastically cut funding. Makes you wonder just what it is they’re trying to achieve. I remember back to the sunny days of Reagan (in retrospect) and his funding cuts to mental health services. You could see it increase the homeless (oops, the rough dresser, was it?) population pretty quick and that was while he was just governor of California. sigh

    Liked by 3 people

    • Rough sleepers. And yes, in hindsight some of the backward looking politicians do look pretty forward thinking today.

      I’m hopeful about what the high school students are doing. The problem is that they have no organization to help keep this together, so it may well be a blast of energy and then everyone goes back to business as usual. On the other hand, it could be a turning point. Let’s hope.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Well, they probably don’t dress very smooth either. 😉
        Perhaps the difference this time is that the kids seem riled up and willing to make a fuss. Too soon to tell if this is a turning point, but there have been some minor bills with baby steps toward some restrictions. If I remember right even Florida raised the age of access to the AK-whatever’s been used in so many of these shootings. Hopefully it’s a start with more to come.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. Arming teachers or other school staff is just about the dumbest idea I have heard—and since Trump somehow became President we have heard some of the dumbest (and most illiterate) ideas ever spoken by a human (okay, I may be giving him more credit here than warranted). And since mass-shootings are taking place in churches, concerts, stadiums, and theaters, the only logical next step is to also arm ministers and priests, musicians, athletes, and all of their respective audiences and fans … oh, and don’t forget the guy selling popcorn at the concession stand. Sadly, this is exactly what the NRA wants. It’s time for a bit of sanity to surface here in America—and it might just be led by high-school students. Let’s hope so!

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Where was the “good guy with a gun” here?! :D According to NRA-logic, that could have been prvented if she only had had a secong gun and shoot the first gun out of her hand! I fully well know that this is absurd, but so is the NRA’s [and Trump’s] argument.

    Liked by 4 people

  7. Ludicrous, the idea of arming teachers Ellen, not your post. And amusing this issue is not. I’m not sure why so many people in this country seem to think that laws made when folks were settling the wild west and other parts are now as firmly unchangeable as those stone commandments that the same gun toting masses try to claim they follow to the letter. This whole thing goes well beyond insanity, but I’m not sure there are words for that, unless bat-shit crazy qualifies.

    Liked by 3 people

  8. So awful here right now! To be blunt, the crap that comes out of our leaders’ mouths is sickening. I have hope that the kids will organize and be loud and vote, when they are able to do so.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. Also, generally, usually, stereotypically, the kind of people who want to teach do not generally, usually, stereotypically, line up with those who want to be armed at work. Generally. I’m just sayin.

    Liked by 2 people

  10. Why do teachers have to pick up the tab for so many of society’s failings? I was a teacher once. I was mightly glad that corporal punishment had been done away with, what kind of role model are you that you enforce your rule with violence? Imagine carrying a gun, in a classroom?! That’s not what the vast majority of teachers went into teaching for. USA should follow Australia and tighten gun laws. No one needs a semi-automatic gun (only soldiers, not civilians).

    Liked by 2 people

  11. I taught. There were days when I forgot to lock my purse in the file cabinet. There were days when I didn’t have chalk because I’d forgotten to purchase any and the school didn’t provide it. There were days when one of my students took out his anger at his parents on us by throwing desks across the room. When I hear “arm teachers” I remember those hectic, scary, impoverished days and cry.

    Liked by 2 people

  12. Why stop at arming teachers. Armed custodians can reduce the litter problem, and armed cafeteria workers can reduce the number of complaints about school lunch food. Armed bus drivers can take care of any unruly kids and road rage issues. And armed principals can show all of them how to avoid accidental leg shooting.
    Next week – we’ll learn how tanks can not only be decorative, but also serve as playground equipment to climb on……..

    Liked by 2 people

  13. Thanks for finding the humor in an otherwise depressing situation. As an expat American (YAY!) who’s lived abroad on 4 continents over the past 15 years, I must admit that the view from afar of American culture is that it simply continues to become more absurd with each passing year. And of all the ironies and absurdities, the gun culture takes the cake (and a bitter tasting one it is!). At this point, finding humor in an otherwise morose situation is the only way I can deal with the pain it brings up inside after each deadly incident. What a bunch of ‘losers’ (to quote 45) we have representing the US population in Washington, DC, especially the ‘tremendously’ intelligent CEO of USA Inc. Laugh, chuckle, gasp, cry…

    Liked by 2 people

  14. Great thoughts – thanks. Honestly, putting professional tools (like guns) in unqualified hands will always have more negative consequences. Sometimes trees fall on roads – but no one would suggest selling cars with chain saws in the trunk so the “common motorist” will always be prepared. Putting lethal firepower in the hands of more people who aren’t going to invest the time and learning and practice to be proficient is reckless.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. Ok, explain this to me like I’m a 5-year-old: there are mass shootings in schools and you want to solve the problem, so you decide to arm teachers. And you’ll have even more guns in schools. And probably more shootings, accidental or otherwise. How is this a good idea??

    Liked by 1 person

    • The only way I could explain that–either to you or to myself–is to drug myself into near-insensibility. Then I’d say, “Your teacher’s going to protect you.” Then I’m not going to tell you how unlikely your teacher is to be able to do that, not having had combat experience. And I’m not going to tell you how hard it is to hit one specific target in a roomful of panicked 5-year-olds.

      A 5-year-old just might believe that. No adult should.

      Liked by 2 people

  16. History has shown us that more violence never decreases violence. My heart aches for the families that have lost loved ones and I look forward to the time when God will rid this world of so much violence. Psalm 72:14 says, “From oppression and from violence he will rescue them, And their blood will be precious in his eyes.” With all of the depression and mental health issues prevalent in children and adults, arming teachers would only increase the number of mass shootings.

    Liked by 2 people

  17. I remember playing Monopoly with the streets taken from Vienna, Austria. Obviously my dad bought it there. I’m quite certain Italians have their own. As for the guns, I’m delirious that there are no holes in street signs where I live. But there was an ugly racist shooting just recently in Macerata three hours from me.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Pingback: *Press it* American schools and their guns #22 | Its good to be crazy Sometimes

  19. Spoken like some one who has no idea what freedom is. I can walk Out My Backdoor and shoot anytime I want, as much as I want. I can feed my family with Wild game, taken with my legally purchased firearm. And I can use that firearm to protect me and mine should the need arise. If you’re ever attacked I sincerely hope the police get there in time, but the odds are against it. Yes, we have a different attitude about guns here. It’s because we possess a little thing called freedom and would like to keep it….

    Liked by 2 people

      • The places with the most violent crime in the us also have some of the toughest gun laws. And the data to back up the claim that the UK is safer is debatable. The way crimes are tallied seems to be completely different between the two countries, making any valid comparison difficult.
        But it does seem clear that your violent crime rate has risen significantly since handguns were banned. Could there be a connection? At any rate, the rise in violent behavior here and there is not just about guns. The family unit has broken down and religion is out of style. We are seeing the results of every man being a god unto himself, IMO.

        Liked by 2 people

        • Homicide rates seem to have peaked in England and Wales in 2004, and in 2014 were below the 1997 level, which is when handguns were banned. http://www.blog.murdermap.co.uk/statistics/homicide-in-england-and-wales-1898-to-2012/. You’ll find that Britain–either in spite of having an established church or possibly because of it–isn’t a particularly religious country. My impression, and that of many people who talk to me about it, is that it’s considerably less religious than the U.S. I wouldn’t say the family unit has broken down, either here or in the U.S.–that’s another subject we’ll just have to disagree on–but it’s changing in both places, in very much the same ways.

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        • And since ‘every man thinks he’s a god unto himself,’ speaks volumes about why men (and boys) should not be trusted with the power of most contemporary fire arms. The human mind is simply too fragile to be trusted with that kind of power.

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          • In my state Alone we have approximately 600000 Hunters. In 2016 there were Zero hunting related deaths.
            Of course many will say one death ever is too many. But then that would mean we have to do away with cars which cause far more deaths. Some people want to live in a bubble and have no freedom I guess. And pretend that the government is going to protect them. I prefer to live in the real world.

            Liked by 1 person

              • But, the point is, here we have 600000 people walking around with guns each year. According to all the anti gunners on here, the woods should be littered with bodies from all of us who got ticked off and couldn’t control ourselves. Yes, we have to do more to keep guns from mentally messed up individuals, but statistically, bathtubs are more likely to kill you than mass shootings. Cell phones are more likely to kill you. People are dying in droves from heroin, People are dying from killing themselves, because we live in a consumer society whose only answer to the needs of man’s soul is more stuff. The problem isn’t guns. What do we do when someone breaks into our house? Even the most rabid anti gunner will call the police– a man or woman with a gun- to come help him. The problem is a lack of respect for others and a cheapening of values. And a lot of this, IMO, comes from the breaking down of the family. What does almost every mass shooter have in common? A lack of a strong father figure in his life.

                Liked by 1 person

              • That’s not at all the argument that anti-gun people make.

                About calling the cops: A friend here is a retired cop. They don’t, except in exceptional circumstances, carry guns here and in his opinion (sorry, I’m paraphrasing) carrying a gun has a negative impact on policing–everything you do in that situation is about protecting the gun, so situations escalate quickly. Would I call the police if my house got broken into? Yes. The people who’d show up would be unarmed and fully capable of handling the situation.

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              • “That’s not at all the argument that anti-gun people make.” It’s exactly the argument that has been made over and over in this discussion, that gun owners can’t be trusted with that much power. And yet we have thousands, no actually, Millions of hunters and gun owners Nationwide that do not go off the deep end and kill people.

                “Fully capable of handling the situation”, lol, really? What’s he going to do, yell real loud at the perpetrator? His job is not to protect you, he just shows up to take down the details of the crime after it happens.
                If I was to call policemen here I couldn’t expect them to arrive quicker than a half-hour if then. By that time but whatever was going to happen already happened.

                But you wouldn’t care about that, because you don’t have a little thing called freedom, so you have no choice but put yourself at the mercy of your rulers.

                Liked by 1 person

              • Sorry, friend, but the argument’s back to where we started. You don’t consider me free? I don’t feel the need to convince you and I doubt my arguments mean much to you any, so I’m calling it quits. I’ll say this much before I go: There are times when guns work and there are times when they don’t. They’re not the measure of freedom.

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  20. If communities have a hard time retaining people in the teaching profession, imagine the exodus if you have to become a sharpshooter, too. I was about to make my usual statement that this kind of thing didn’t happen when I was in high school (1976) or even when my niece graduated from high school (2000) until I saw these statistics: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_school_shootings_in_the_United_States#20th_century This mess has been going on for years. People who want unrestricted 2nd amendment rights love that law more than life itself.

    Liked by 2 people

  21. You brits need to get your knives under control. Lock those knives away and less people will die. One thing people don’t seem to get is that we already have common sense gun laws. In most of the shootings, illegal guns are used anyway. Believing that evil people bent on murder are going to obey laws is just foolishness.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I’m old enough to remember when guns were more strictly regulated in the U.S. Sure, there were illegal guns around, but the country wasn’t awash in high-powered weaponry. In fact, a lot of concern was about zip guns, homemade guns made from a car antenna if I understood the directions correctly. (No, I never did try making one, so my understanding of them may be a little hazy.) Worrying about them is a lot like the concern about knife crime in Britain: It’s not that either knives or zip guns can’t do damage, but compared to, oh, let’s say an AK-47 it holds the damage down to a less horrifying level.

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      • Actually, I think that’s a crock. A good sniper with a bolt action could take down far more people than then someone spraying the crowd with a so called assault rifle. A person with a couple pistols and extra clips can do just as much damage as with an AK, No one is using full autos for these shootings. Full autos are highly regulated. As far as homemade guns, the fact that you can now print a gun at home may make the whole gun control debate obsolete.

        Liked by 1 person

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