U.S. Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Bill Hagerty (R.-Tenn.) will soon introduce a bill they believe will help discourage future criminals from approaching school grounds.
Indeed, it is about time school shootings were truly addressed rather than politicized. Such tragedies cannot be allowed to continue.
The big difference between the U.S. and other countries around the world that don’t face the same issues around gun violence, however, is that America’s establishment included the right to bear arms. And, no matter what one might think of this right, the weapons are already here and have been for the past two hundred plus years.
“Weeding them out” is virtually impossible. Even if it were likely to disarm law abiding citizens (and I do not believe it would be, as this would imply taking away basic rights, an action to which, historically, Americans have not responded well), it would not solve the problem of those who would break the law anyway. They would get guns no matter what. Thus, all this would do, given the current circumstances, would be to leave the innocent with no real means of self-defense.
So, how does one solve school shootings in the U.S.? Well, we can take a look at how security is provided to those most valued by society: politicians, celebrities, and other people of importance in any country. With armed guards.
According to a recent press release, Senators Blackburn and Hagerty are introducing the SAFE School Act for this very purpose:
“The SAFE School Act establishes a $900 million grant program that will allow both public and private schools to train and hire veterans and former law enforcement officers to serve as school safety officers, hire off duty law enforcement officers, and provide funding to harden schools and increase physical security.”
Finally, America’s children might also be treated as important to society.
The press release includes the senators’ comments on the matter.
Senator Blackburn said: “I am beyond heartbroken at the shooting that occurred at the Covenant School in Nashville”. She further noted: “No parent should have to endure what these families are experiencing. Schools should be places where children are safe to learn, play, and be children. My legislation with Senator Hagerty will allow both public and private schools to train and hire veterans and former law enforcement officers to serve as school safety officers as well as increase physical security measures to harden schools. By providing these critical funds, we can help protect our precious children and secure our schools.”
Senator Hagerty added: “The Covenant School community, the city of Nashville, and our home state of Tennessee have suffered unspeakable, heartbreaking loss this week, and I join the families of the victims and all those affected in mourning this incomprehensible tragedy”. He continued: “The heroic bravery of law enforcement officers and first responders who quickly ran into danger, as well as the actions of teachers, staff, and students who deployed security measures, saved many other lives and underscore the critical role of school-security planning and personnel in the face of depraved, evil acts. That’s why I’ve joined Senator Blackburn in introducing this legislation to provide additional security resources to keep our schools and children safe.”
The bill seems to have the approval of leaders across Tennessee, local, state and federal law enforcement officials as well as school safety advocates and military veterans. Senator Blackburn has introduced similar legislation in the prior Congress also.
It is truly time that this matter was looked at in the context of current realities, instead of being used for political demagoguery or to express wishful thinking. We need more such efforts to keep our innocent children safe. We have to give their security at least the same courtesy we give to our entertainers or to those who preach to us why we don’t need weapons while they themselves make use of them.
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