By Indri Schaelicke | United States
School shootings are events that no one wishes to occur. Yet, we are facing a tragedy, and need a solution. However, the weeks of media coverage only bring incessant gun control rhetoric. Even before all of the facts and details of the case are investigated and released by authorities, supporters of both stances on the issue pounce upon the story and exploit it for political gain. Prime-time news coverage is filled with leftists who openly advocate for infringements upon our inalienable right to own and use firearms.
Even worse, however, are the never-ending calls for large scale gun confiscation and bans on assault weapons. These claims contradict clear evidence that shows how the programs have not worked in other countries.
Proponents of gun control measures often point to Australia’s National Firearms Agreement of 1996 as a model for US policy. The act increased control of semi and fully automatic weapons, making it so only licensed people could use them for a short list of purposes. Personal protection did not make the list. The act also included a gun buyback program. The graph below shows the rates of various violent crimes between 1996 and 2010. Since the legislation was enacted, only one of five categories, robbery, has fallen. On the contrary, assault has risen dramatically.
(More on Australia’s National Firearms Agreement of 1996 is available here.)
The data clearly indicates that the goal of the policy instituted was not met. So, why would it work in a country with greater levels of gang violence and organized crime?
The issue with large scale gun confiscation is more than just a pragmatic one. The restricting of someone’s right to bear arms limits their ability to defend their own life. It is our natural right to defend ourselves against aggressors, and when the state makes it more difficult to do so, they are infringing upon natural rights.
So, how do we protect those the most vulnerable and defenseless, young children in schools without infringing upon natural rights? The solution is to allow school districts to hire private, armed security to stand guard at schools.
Governor Greg Abbott of Texas recently unveiled his plan to address school safety, which would include hiring and arming veterans to guard schools from active shooters. The Governor’s plan is a step in the right direction, as it recognizes that criminals will get their hands on guns and commit horrible crimes, no matter what laws are in place. However, increasing the amount of armed, trained officials within schools decreases the response time to an active shooter situation. A plan such as this may have saved lives in Parkland, where police took several crucial minutes too arrive at and act on the scene.
Reducing the decision to hire armed private security to defend schools down to the local level allows the community to come together and decide if that is something they are comfortable with having within their schools. Many parents and students may have strong feelings either way about the proposal, and they should be given the chance to have their opinions heard. The community must also decide if it is something they are willing to fund, as it would take significant cash to be able to finance such a plan.
Hiring private security to defend schools against active shooter threats is the most logical way to protect the most vulnerable, our young children, while also not infringing upon our natural right to bear arms.
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