OPINION | Phil Paleologos: MA Police Chief Favors Arming Teachers
I want to start by asking you a question: What are your local schools doing to protect their students?
In Massachusetts, one law enforcement official is not against arming teachers.
Oxford Police Chief Anthony Saad supports arming some teachers in school, but only if they are licensed, competent, capable, well trained and have the will to help out in a school shooting situation.
I have to agree with the police chief that the majority of times, when law enforcement is responding, they arrive about six minutes after the shooting started, and by then, they're just cleaning up the mess. At their local town meeting this week, the chief said it's paramount to have some lethal force inside the school, and he believes part of that force should come from armed, well trained teachers. I can see his point.
Since Columbine in 1999, police response tactics have changed. No longer do they wait for the SWAT teams to arrive before going into the school. Law enforcement is now charged with the grim task of entering the school and eliminating the threat in order to save lives.
His critics asked, what if a teacher accidentally killed a student? The chief countered by saying when it reaches the point of a gunman entering the school intent on murdering students and teachers, it's already reached its breaking point. He said, "What are you going to do? Throw a desk at the gunman?"
Since Columbine, 250 people have died in 150 school districts nationwide.
The critics who are opposed to enabling some teachers and other adults in schools to carry arms in order to possibly stop a mass murderer say schools are to educate or we need fewer guns, not more guns. They assert these answers as if they were self-evident truth.
These critics don't fight evil, they just fight those who do.
Phil Paleologos is the morning host on 1420 WBSM New Bedford. He can be heard weekdays from 6 to 10 a.m. The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of the author.