Saturday, August 16, 2008

Anti-Gun PSH In Houston

So in this morning's Houston Chronicle, the local scribes decided to get around to asking the denizens of the Houston education system what they thought of one North Texas school district's decision to authorize teachers to carry guns. Much pants-shitting hysteria ensued:

"It's a disaster waiting to happen," said Gayle Fallon, president of the Houston Federation of Teachers. "It's right up there with worst ideas in the history of modern education."
In an urban district like Houston's, Fallon said, she'd worry that students would get their hands on employees' guns.
"We could end up arming half the gangs in Houston," she said.
The idea was equally unpopular in suburban Cypress-Fairbanks.
"Absurd would be the word I would use," said Don Ryan, president of the Cy-Fair school board. "It's almost like something out of a movie."
It's the type of decision, Fallon added, that makes Texas a laughingstock nationally.
The plan could also backfire, so to speak, said Bryan Clements, executive director for security and technology support for the Galena Park school district.
"It is foolish to introduce more weapons into the school environment, even under the guise of wanting to provide better protection for our students," he said. "Staff would have to be constantly concerned with weapon security and retention, thus taking away from their ability to focus on their main goal, teaching students. In the event of a crisis there is no manageable way to integrate armed staff into the crisis response plan."
Gloria "Jo" Floyd, head of the San Antonio-based Nursing Consultant Educational and Health Services, said she's worried that the policy will give the Harrold district a false sense of security. She questioned where the guns would be stored, whether teachers could access them quickly enough and whether an educator could really handle a weapon effectively in a crisis situation.
"They sound a little bit more paranoid than they need to be," she said. "But if they're looking for notoriety ... they certainly stirred it up."

One might ask if they (both the teachers and the journalists) ever studied the situation in Israel, where the population is basically under constant threat of some form of attack. I'm guessing the teachers didn't, and even if they did they'd probably use the reality of life in Israel to say that it's a necessity for teachers to carry guns there. But if you ask me, that's more than a bit of a cop-out. Evil lurks everywhere, and you never know where exactly it's going to strike. When one gets right down to it, the fact is that the Israelis by and large recognize this, while way the hell too many people here in the United States choose to bury their heads in the sand. As far as weapon retention and all that, I would think that integrates into the whole sheepdog/warrior mindset along with concepts such as situational awareness and zones of safety (or whatever the proper name for that concept is), i.e., throwing the lead when an attacker gets within a certain distance. I must admit the line questioning an educator's ability to handle a weapon effectively in a crisis situation was hilarious in a way -- albeit unintentionally so, most likely -- as it evokes the line, "Those who can, do; those who can't do, teach." But to whatever extent the typical educator can't handle a weapon effectively in a crisis situation, it only shows how far behind the curve we are here in this country. And as far as that ludicrous statement from Gayle Fallon about "arming half the gangs in Houston" goes, well, since the weapons would be stored on the teachers' respective persons, it would be somewhat difficult to do that. PSH, indeed. These people are just all over the map!