The Pioneer

The Pioneer

Arming Teachers or Stricter Gun Laws

Victoria Bratsos, Student Journalist

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WEST ORANGE, Nj — Following recent school shootings, a new debate has come up throughout America. How does America prevent this from happening again? Some people, most notoriously President Donald Trump, think that they have found a solution.  Trump has suggested arming school officials, predominately teachers, with firearms. While this policy has been in the talks since the 2012 shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Connecticut, the recent Parkland, Florida shooting has made it front page news. Organizations like the NEA (National Education Association) have been strongly against this policy, citing it as “ill-conceived,” and “dangerous.”  The association made up of teachers has conducted a survey that resulted in 70% of the members agreeing that arming personnel would not be effective in preventing gun violence in schools. But, others disagree and argue that in the event of a shooting in more rural school areas, it would take police too long and having gun-free areas would make them easier targets since they would have minimal resistance.

“I don’t think that the answer to stopping guns is more guns,” WOHS history teacher, Mr. Miskimon, stated. “It is counter-productive. It creates more safety issues and safety concerns in schools and I don’t think most teachers got involved in this profession with this responsibility in mind. I believe that we need better laws. ”

“Violence leads to more violence and you can’t fight fire with fire because it just leads to an inferno,” stated Freshman Class President Paulina Acosta. “You don’t know the mental health of teachers and when you put a gun in schools, you expose children to violence. An alternative method would be to have stricter gun laws. The root of the problem is mass distribution of guns.”

WOHS mathematics teacher Mr. Denburg added, “The answer to gun violence, in my opinion, is definitely not more guns. It mathematically makes no sense and only opens the door to all kinds of other problems that I wouldn’t even know where to begin with… If anything, the answer would be to have a trained professional like more cops or retired policemen or maybe reserved military or something like that… I could not be more opposed to this idea and I think it is very irresponsible for our President to even be suggesting it without thinking through the infinite questions and options that would need to be thought about and discussed before this should even be put into motion.”

Not one teacher or student The Pioneer staff interviewed agreed with the proposal.

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