03 May 2019 - Florida passes Bill Allowing Armed Teachers in the wake of mass shootings
Florida Lawmakers just approved a bill allowing more teachers to carry guns in schools
Curt Anderson (Time, 01/05/2019)
More Florida classroom teachers could carry guns in school under a bill passed Wednesday by state lawmakers, the latest response to last year’s mass shooting at a Parkland high school.
The Republican-led House voted 65-47 on Wednesday to send the bill to GOP Gov. Ron DeSantis, who is expected to sign it. The measure expands an existing school “guardian” program to allow any teacher to volunteer to carry a weapon if their local school district approves.
“It allows the good guys to stop the bad. The bad guys will never know when the good guys are there to shoot back,” said Republican Rep. Chuck Brannan of Lake City, a retired law enforcement officer.
Despite school boards' refusals, bill arming teachers goes to governor for signature
Briona Arradondo (FOX 13 News,01/05/2019)
Florida legislators made a bold move Wednesday, sending the School Safety Act, with a controversial component, to Governor Ron DeSantis for a signature.
The bill expands the voluntary “school guardian” program, which currently allows school staff, including teachers, to be trained and armed. The program was one of the recommendations from the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission, a group that met in the months following the Parkland school's massacre in 2018.
“This legislation gives us the option. It is consistent with the recommendations in the report and this will provide more, not less, protection to our children in the state of Florida,” said State Rep. Spencer Roach, (R-North Fort Myers).
Florida to Let Teachers Carry Guns. Will Black Students Pay the Price?
Patricia Mazzei (The New York Times, 02/05/2019)
The outcome of the vote in the Florida State House this week was a foregone conclusion: A proposal to allow teachers to carry firearms in school would easily win approval.
But that did not mean the debate would not be long and emotional, as Democrats implored Republicans in the majority to consider the possible risks — one of them being teachers with guns who might represent yet another source of risk for black and Latino students.
The tension peaked when Representative Shevrin D. Jones, a Democrat who is African-American, tried unsuccessfully to pass a pair of amendments on the House floor on Tuesday aimed at protecting children from the possibility that an armed teacher in a chaotic situation could assume that a black student was a threat.
John Lott: Armed teachers can save student lives – Don’t leave children defenseless against school shooters
John Lott (Fox News, 27/05/2019)
Twenty years after Columbine High School shootings in Colorado, in which 12 students and one teacher were killed by two students who then committed suicide, Americans are still looking for what actions to take to stop mass public shootings.
The rest of the world, where mass public shootings are actually much more common, is also looking for solutions. Russia, France, Finland and Norway are among the European countries that have experienced far more deaths per capita than the U.S. from mass public shooting attacks.
Change is slowly coming across America. For example, a growing number of states and school districts are coming to the commonsense conclusion that we should not leave our children unprotected and defenseless in their schools.
Editorial: Teachers and school staff should be not be armed
Stampede Editorial Board (Metea Media, 01/05/2019)
The Florida Senate passed a bill that would allow administrators, teachers, and support staff to carry guns on school grounds with approval from their local school boards. Staff would be required to undertake a psychological test and a minimum of 144 hours of training, but the bill has bitterly split the state and the country.
In the wake of devastating school shootings around the country, gun rights activists have recommended allowing teachers to be armed to potentially protect themselves and their students against threats. However, more guns in school could add fuel to an already burning fire of school violence and has created a national conversation on how to best protect students.