Yes, Teachers Should Be Armed

Chris Ybarra, Editor-In-Chief

As the frequency of school shootings rises in America, citizens have begun to demand a variety of solutions as to how future tragedies can be prevented. One such solution is to allow trained teachers to be armed while at school, which has stirred controversy among Americans in regards of how legitimate that sounds. However, if schools were to allow trained and consenting faculty members to be armed while at school, both the students and the staff will be safer in the case of an active shooter.

To some, this argument sounds off alarms, causing them to believe that every teacher they see will be packing heat at school. However, the argument is not that teachers MUST have a gun in their possession as well as the training that goes with it. The argument is to ALLOW concealed carry for faculty members that wish to do so. Teachers became teachers so that they could teach. Teachers should not be forced to be combat-ready if that’s not what they signed up for.

“I think it’s ok if they take a course to show they are responsible and can handle it.”
— Freshman Aiden Stanley

However, teachers that do wish to be armed should be able to do so, albeit with a permit and proper training. To allow teachers to have concealed carry is to allow the school to be a safer environment for both students and staff. 

A common protest against concealed carry in schools is the stigma that an overwhelming majority of people have no experience with a gun or know how to properly use it. In contrast, most Americans have some form of experience with a firearm, whether it be from official training or in a casual setting.

In fact, 72% of Americans have fired a gun, despite 55% of them never owning a gun themselves according to a survey conducted by Pew Research Center. In addition, an estimated 42% of Americans live in a household with a gun, while 30% actually own a gun. In a similar study, the Crime Prevention Research Center reported that as of 2018, 17.25 million U.S. citizens have a concealed carry permit, which is a 273% increase since 2007.

Now, some might say that teachers should not be allowed to be armed, as there is already a resource officer on campus who has a gun. But that’s the issue. There’s only a limited amount of officers a school can have on campus before it becomes a prison. If a select group of teachers were allowed to have concealed carry while at school, the biggest threat would be to the teachers themselves, as they have no other special gadgets or armor to protect them. Police officers have guns, as well as a taser, handcuffs, protective vests, pepper spray or even a baton. In contrast, a teacher would have the gun as their only means of defense against an attacker. 

Additionally, a teacher with proper firearm training would be on par with a police officer that has the same training. The unfortunate truth is that there is a margin of error for both armed teachers and police officers. Neither one is 100% accurate or can be predicted as to how they’ll react to stress. 

Teachers should be allowed to be armed if they choose to, nonetheless. The teacher should be required, however, to have proper training ,undergo a thorough background check and consent to a psychological evaluation test. Allowing teachers to protect their students should not be a topic people have to debate about.