Guns in School

Guns in School

Taylor McGriff, Staff Writer

With gun laws and gun violence in the spotlight, the number of people who can and will carry guns is shocking. Every year, roughly 100,000 people are shot every year in the United States. Since Florida enacted its “Stand Your Ground” law, the amount of gun related deaths has spiked. Recently, school shootings are sadly becoming more prevalent. In a rural town in Texas, teachers are now carrying guns while they teach their classes.

Florida and Texas have usually followed parallel paths when it comes to laws and policies, especially in regards to guns. With this trend in the forefront, teachers carrying guns in Florida can easily become a reality.

 

Thinking about this idea of “classroom protection” may seem overwhelming to some, and raises the question whether anxious teachers should be armed while they teach the lesson of the day? This idea presents automatic red flags.

 

Seeing a gun in public makes many people uncomfortable, but watching a teacher instruct a class with a gun on his or her waist might be the biggest distraction to date. The idea of having a gun in a classroom full of minors could send chills up the spines of many students and staff at WHS.

 

Some students do not feel completely comfortable with the thought of teachers having guns in school.

 

“I would feel so uncomfortable if this happened at WHS, but slowly I would feel a bit safer. It would surely be distracting,” Brockton Boretti, senior, said.

 

Another student felt quite different about the issue at hand.

 

“The thought of even having a gun on campus is really uncomfortable and scary. I don’t like the idea of teachers being able to have guns at all,” Daniel Barrios, senior, said.

 

Teachers will be protected but what about the students? With the onset of gun-violence in “safe places”, protection against protection [guns] is also on the rise. A worried mother came up with the bright idea to protect her daughter from guns the best way she could think of: a bullet-proof backpack. Keeping in mind the recent and most tragic fatalities from Sandy Hook Elementary and the most recent shooting at University of Florida, bullet-proof backpacks may become a new trend.

 

Some students at WHS think the idea is outrageous.

“Just knowing that society has come to such drastic measures is so sad. It’s scary knowing that I have to fear such violence at my own school or any school for that matter,” Kamri Simpson, senior, said.

 

When asked their thoughts and feelings about teachers carrying guns while in school, some teachers at WHS were 100% against the idea.

 

“Absolutely not! I am dead set against the idea of teachers having guns. In my mind, that shouldn’t even be a question,” Mr. Sink, Government teacher, said.

 

Another teacher had a similar feeling to Mr. Sink, questioning the ethics of carrying guns in school.

 

“I just don’t see the need for that! As teachers, we are supposed to be here to help our students. I don’t even think it’s ethical for teachers to be armed while on school campus,” said Mrs. Comer, an English teacher.

 

Another teacher fears the possibility of a gun falling into the wrong hands.

 

“’ I think this is a very bad idea. It sends the complete wrong message to our students. This can potentially be very dangerous if the gun falls into the hands of the wrong person,” said Mrs. Anisman, an English and Film teacher.

 

Yet, some were in favor the Texas initiative of having a gun in the classroom.

 

“I think teachers should be able to have guns while on campus. I also think the restrictions and guidelines need to be extremely strict and rigid. The teachers should go through psychiatric evaluations, be registered with police department, and other stipulations. Having the gun on their hip during class? No. Although, a safe and secret compartment in the classroom would be okay and safe,” Mr. Millio, Earth/Space Science teacher, said.

 

But when asked about kids having to wear bullet-proof backpacks, all teachers agreed that the thought was “sad”, “crazy”, and also thought it was shocking that we have to go to such measures for protection in a place that is already thought to be “safe.”

 

With the nation-wide debate on gun restrictions, this drastic change just might be on the horizon for Florida schools and possibly even Wellington High School. Yes, this idea is incredibly frightening and shocking to some, but anything is possible in the Sunshine State.