Friday, January 30, 2015

Texas GOP State Legislator: The Solution To Guns In Schools Is More Guns In Schools, And Teachers Shooting Students Bearing Guns

That tumbling noise you just heard was my late father, a secondary school educator and former Navy gunnery officer in W.W. II, rolling over in his grave. The provocation for his spinning was probably this bill introduced in the Texas Lege, probably by legislators like this one. From Catherine Thompson at TPM:
Texas Aggie pistol
Legislation filed last week in Texas would allow teachers to use deadly force in order to protect school property, the Houston Chronicle reported.

State Rep. Dan Flynn (R), who's previously fought to roll back concealed handgun license requirements, filed the Teacher's Protection Act authorizing educators to use deadly force to protect themselves or another person on school grounds.

The bill would also authorize the use of deadly force to protect school property and shield any teacher who uses deadly force from prosecution should they cause injury or death.

Texas law already offers immunity from discipline to teachers who use "reasonable" force against a student, according to the Chronicle. State law also allows any adult to carry a firearm in a school with the principal's permission.

My father knew firsthand the most likely result of introducing guns into the school environment: once, using his Navy training, he disarmed a mentally disturbed girl who brought a loaded gun to school with the intention to shoot (at least) the principal. She got as far as the administrative offices before my father spotted the outline of her gun in a coat pocket.

Lest you make some invalid assumptions about him, Dad was not shy about guns. In his old age, he owned a rifle for hunting and a shotgun to display in the presence of the occasional burglar who sought entry to his trailer. The weapons with which he had the greatest familiarity 40 years or so earlier were mounted on a W.W. II troop landing ship on which he was the fire control officer; some of those guns were large enough that a man could theoretically crawl inside. (A woman could as well, but no woman would be that much of a damned fool.)

With all that background, training and experience, Dad was utterly determined to keep guns out of the public schools in Texas. I don't know if he testified about such matters to the Texas Lege, but he appeared before legislative committees quite a few times about other matters, so I assume he spoke to them about concealed-carry guns as well. If Dad were alive now, his views on guns would be very unpopular in his home state.

It is already hard enough to capture the attention of intelligent, well-prepared, recently graduated schoolteachers who might want to work in what anyone smarter than a fish would understand is a difficult and sometimes dangerous position at any wage, let alone poverty wages. Compelling teachers to be responsible for firearms in their classrooms, for preventing felony theft, for using deadly force against students, is too damned idiotic even to contemplate in the Texas Lege chambers, let alone in real life in actual schoolrooms full of hormone-saturated pre-adults. But I've often said that Republicans are too dumb for words...

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