The Column, No. 85:

Stopping Attacks on Schools

By Mark Wynn

Arguments and remedies depend mostly on individual perspective. Few of us agree on every detail of any issue. Courteous dialogue is essential to best understand and consider all the options. Thus far, my take on the Connecticut school shooting (December 2012) is this:

1. In the vast majority of instances, police are not called in time or cannot get to the scene in time to prevent a crime from happening.

2. Many public sites that routinely attract and serve the general public have armed security (e.g., court houses, legislatures, airports, museums, Federal buildings). Surely, schools and our children deserve the same degree of protection.

3. Statistics are elusive, but it seems that many more crimes are prevented by alert armed citizens than the general public realizes. Bad stuff gets the headlines, because the public needs to be aware of what happened and how to minimize the chances of it happening again.

4. Deranged, criminal and evil  people know that the way to inflict maximum hurt on a family, community and nation is to harm children, the future.

5. Whether targeting schools or anything else, deranged, criminal, or evil people usually go for the weakest prey, people least able to defend themselves or least committed to defending themselves.

6. Attackers usually have the tremendous advantage of surprise, thus often are able to accomplish their initial goals before their targets can escape or get help.

7. As awful as such attacks are, they still are a very small percentage considering the size of the U.S. population and other causes of injuries and deaths. Of course casualties are never acceptable. Still, resources are limited and no society anywhere has figured how to stop all crime and keep all its people happy and cooperative.

8. To keep schools safe, what could be more effective than having trained armed personnel in every school? Details will vary according to communities and resources. The best solutions may vary from community to community. It will be more cost for schools that already cost a lot. However, only trained armed people protecting each school can most effectively stop or minimize the damage from attackers. This is true for every school shooting incident. Even with such protection, all such attacks might not be deterred, but hopefully the damage can be significantly reduced.

9. Intelligence resources that discover and prevent such attacks before they occur remain our best hope. In such manner the nation tries to deter or prevent even worse attacks than 9/11. We can do no less for our schools.

10. For malcontents seeking to do harm, there are far worse weapons than firearms. It probably is best not to discuss them publicly. Limitations on various aspects of firearms are always up for consideration. However, the main task is to deter any attack on any school. If an attack happens anyway, it must be stopped as quickly as possible with least loss of innocent life and property.

11. My kids are grown and have kids of their own, many still in school. I want my grandkids protected by trained armed people in all their schools. I admire and respect the police, but they are far too few to be everywhere all the time. The police need help. Teachers and our students need help. Give them the armed protectors they need in their schools. Don't let teachers and students continue to be easy targets tempting deranged, criminal, or evil people. This will cost more money. How much are our schools and children worth? If we can't afford this, we can't afford anything.

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Copyright 2012 by Mark Wynn and/or All rights reserved.