This year at PARMA, Katherine Jones gave an outstanding presentation on gun control for public employees. Which got me thinking – should teachers carry concealed firearms?
Already have an answer in mind? Most of us do. But before you jump to your conclusion, let’s take a look as some of the things we need to consider. First, keep in mind that I am a gun guy. I grew up shooting and hunting and while I recognize the danger involved, I also see that there are some great uses for guns that don’t involve criminal acts.
That’ being said, I don’t think that school employees should carry concealed firearms on campus. Here’s just a few of the reasons why:
Lack of training
First and foremost, most handgun buyers are very excited when they pick up their first handgun. Many will hit the range several times that first month and fire several hundred rounds. This is great and a lot of fun. Wow, they hit the big target several times! Unfortunately, this type of training is done by themselves or with another handgun rookie. And therein lies the problem. Discovering their mistakes and making improvements is seldom done. So, most handgun owners remain rookies and this does not make for a great CCW, especially when the active shooter target is moving about school children. Watch this video to learn what type of training would be involved.
Lack of continued training
Shooting is a perishable skill. Meaning that you must continue to train on the firearm and put thousands of rounds down range in order to keep your skills fresh. How often you ask? Well police officers generally renew this skill once every 6 months. The better ones do so once a quarter. For a private individual with a CCW this adds up to considerable expense and time, something school site staff rarely have.
Training variety is non-existent
Here’s the big one. Just because you hit the stationary target while standing at the range, doesn’t mean you are prepared for a full on combat situation. In fact, you are no where near ready for combat because you train at the range. You need to be ready to hit a target when your adrenaline is rushing, you have auditory exclusion, tunnel vision, are operating in the dark, while running, while being fired at, possibly being injured and defending 30 school kids lives.
This means that you must do countless dry fire drills, train shooting from the opposite hand, get your adrenaline rushing and still trying to hit your target as well as learning how to deal with tunnel vision and clearing a jammed weapon and swapping magazines on the fly. In addition, you should be well prepared to fire from a close quarter combat position to ensure that you keep your firearm and don’t hand it over to the bad guy. Unfortunately, you will be hard pressed to find a range that let’s you jump and run all over the place to practice these techniques, especially in California.
Aftermath of taking someone’s life
No amount of range training is going to prepare you for taking someone’s life, especially a child. Especially an innocent child you shot because you missed your target. This is something that most of us never consider when looking at concealed carry. Are you prepared to take someone’s life. Are you prepared for the press, the lawsuits, the people that think you are monster versus a hero. Probably not.
Storage and other carrying considerations
In addition to training, you have to be prepared to carry your weapon at all times while on campus. Never tell anyone that you have one on you and never leave it out for children to get their hands on. Most teachers and schools are ill prepared for dealing with a loaded handgun on campus.
For those administrators who are still considering allowing concealed carry on their campus, we have develop a concealed carry policy for your review. Please contact us for a copy.