Friday, March 8, 2013

Reading, Writing, and Rambo

In the news: South Dakota has passed a law allowing teachers to come to school armed.  This in the wake of the Newtown tragedy and the NRA's response to it, wherein they recommended putting more guns in the schools to combat the problem of guns in the schools.

But that's the NRA's response to everything: more guns.  The next time a mother shoots her baby--and, given our gun-crazed culture, that day can't be far off--the NRA will propose putting guns in infant formula.

I'd be more optimistic about the potential of guns in schools to halt violence in schools if anyone could show me data that guns anywhere halt violence anywhere.  But I look at the streets, the shopping malls, the movie theaters, the homes (such as the one where Oscar Pistorius and his once beautiful, now dead girlfriend lived), and I don't see the connection.

I suppose you could argue that the reason there's less violence on the streets than there would be otherwise is that criminals are aware of an armed police force.  Or that terrorists are less likely to strike a target if a military presence defends it.  Or (as the NRA did quite callously argue) that no one shoots at the President's daughters because they're protected by armed Secret Service agents.

You could then argue that the ultimate solution is for everyone, everywhere, to be armed.  That's the logic of the argument, isn't it?  That's what the NRA is (beg pardon) shooting for?

But you know, a few years back, I was robbed at gunpoint.  I survived.  Had I been carrying a weapon, someone would surely have been killed.  It might have been the other guy.  It might also have been me.

Had there been an armed teacher in Sandy Hook, the children might still be alive.  Or not.  We can speculate as to what might have happened under those circumstances.

But the only thing we do know is that if the perpetrator had not been armed, those children would most definitely be alive.

And the NRA would be one step further from its hellish vision of a society where teaching to kill and killing to teach are one and the same.

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