Home > Uncategorized > Armed Guards at the Door— Redux

Armed Guards at the Door— Redux

April 10, 2018

I am on a vacation away from the internet, so I am re-publishing some posts from years past… in part to keep the webpage “alive” in my absence, but, as is true in this case, to illustrate that nothing has changed since December, 2012 when I originally posted this. Then 40+% of schools had armed guards…. Now 60% do… and soon even more will!  

When I worked in Philadelphia public schools in the early 1970s gang wars raged. To limit the scuffles in schools, the City of Philadelphia assigned an armed policeman to the front door of the schools in the most troubled neighborhoods and made that door the only point of entry… except for recess… and except for the times when the shift changed at mid-day and 1500 students left and another 1500 students entered… and except for the times of the day when students would leave through a remote fire exit and prop it open so friends could join them… You get the picture: one armed guard couldn’t begin to monitor a four story building that took up a square block of real estate in Philadelphia any more that one armed guard could monitor a 500 pupil suburban school on a 50 acre campus. Given its costliness and impracticality, I cannot believe that anyone is giving the NRA’s proposal to staff each school in the country with one armed policeman any credibility whatsoever.

In this age where there appears to be a political consensus that anyone who wants to acquire a rapid-firing weapon is free to do so, there is an increased risk that a school child, an adult at a shopping mall, someone attending a movie, or someone going to church has an increased risk of being killed by a gunman. Unless we change our thinking about the access to semi-automatic weapons, we should learn to live with the increased risk. Adding more guns to the equation will only increase gun violence and risk.

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