NWA Letters to the Editor

Posted: May 25, 2018 at 7:51 p.m.

Coroner's ruling may differ from others

Texas Republicans have decided that death in school shootings results from too many doors in our schools. The NRA has decided it's too much Ritalin.

I suspect a coroner will determine the cause of death was from a bullet fired from an NRA-approved gun.

Mike Cooper

Fayetteville

Surprising conclusion: Time to arm teachers

The recent school shooting in Texas, where 10 individuals were killed, makes the 16th in the nation in 2018. That's about three school shootings per month. At Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Parkland, Florida, 17 students and teachers were confirmed dead. This doesn't even include those who were shot and survived or those who were injured trying to escape the shooters.

I never thought I would come to this conclusion, but it's time for America to train and arm its teachers to counter such attacks to prevent the innocent loss of life inflicted in our schools. There is data that show the number of school shootings with multiple victims between 2000-2010 in the United States is only one less than the next 36 countries with the most school shootings combined.

As a nation, it's time we change outdated laws, impose stricter background checks, temporarily make it illegal to purchase assault rifles, limit gun magazine size, address mental illness, hold accountable parents who make no attempt to keep teens from having access to guns, which is easy to do. Is the gun locked up? Do you have a trigger lock on it? No? You're accountable. We also need to have laws that deal harshly with perpetrators of mass shootings.

I'm amazed by those who have been interviewed by the news media and are opposed to training and arming teachers. These individuals say "it's not the teacher's role" to act in the place of school security, which I agree with. Of those interviewed, they confess they have never owned or shot a firearm and undoubtedly would be opposed to arming any teacher. It's logical that there would be reluctance and fear in their minds if they have never had any experience with a firearm. I understand their feelings but I also know it's time we give students and teachers a fighting chance at surviving an attack. There are many teachers, male and female, who are hunters, have concealed carry permits, who target practice and would be good candidates for training and carrying a firearm in school, to repel an armed attacker.

Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Arkansas children are trained to throw textbooks at shooters. It's not just students who are concerned and ask themselves "if this will be the day," but teachers do as well. I have heard the critics' comments of "what if a teacher goes crazy and began shooting in a school?" What's to stop it from happening now? In stark contrast, what is always reported is that the teacher stood between the attacker and their students trying to protect them without any means to do so.

It's the role of our government to protect its citizens. The reality that we all must face is that it can't be done without training and arming teachers. It's time to arm teachers for the time being, until this plague of school shootings is brought under control.

Terry Stewart

Springdale

Editorial on 05/26/2018