Fences, guards, and guns in American schools

Published 2:53 pm Friday, April 7, 2023

BY DR. GLENN MOLLETTE
Eventually every school system in America will have to fence in every school and put an armed guard at every gate. Inside the school building cameras will have to be focused on doors and vulnerable glass windows and someone will have to monitor all the cameras. Some school systems will be slow on adding such security but lawsuits from teachers will eventually bring more stringent security into reality.
The Nashville shooting of three children and three adult workers was another heinous act carried out by a deranged person. Someone who commits such an act is beyond mentally ill, they have become mentally deranged. Sadly, the individual waited too long to get psychological help.
I don’t want to mention the shooter’s name because too much attention is given to people who kill innocent school teachers and children and even people in houses of worship. They prey on places that are typically gun-free zones filled with people who are often trapped with no way of escape. Newspapers and media sources should eliminate mentioning the name of such killers. As evil as it is, these mentally ill people see such acts as a way for them to get massive negative attention and to go out in what they perceive to be a moment of glory.
The idea of such security at all our schools is difficult to embrace but we have no choice. This adds to the financial challenges facing school systems. A fence is not aesthetically appealing. It looks third world but that’s where we are in America. I’ve traveled to enough third world countries to have viewed walls around average homes, churches and schools. In Brazil many walls are erected around homes because of the high crime rate. Thieves are everywhere in Brazil. There are many wonderful people in Brazil but also plenty of thieves.
We didn’t grow up with fences and walls. We don’t want them today, but do we have a choice?
Many believe eliminating semi-automatic rifles is the answer. A killer with two six shooters could still kill someone and probably several in a classroom filled with children. If we outlaw guns in this country, then evil people will find a way to smuggle them into our country to other evil people who aren’t concerned about keeping the law. Then, we will be defenseless and at their mercy. Fentanyl is illegal but over a 100,000 people died in 2022 from fentanyl and synthetic opioids.
I don’t own a semi-automatic rifle but if China or Russia invades us, I want one. Actually, I want one for my wife, children and grandkids. We need at least a chance to defend ourselves.
By all means we must stop the mentally ill from having such weapons but that’s hard to do when someone has no record of any psychotic episodes. There is nothing wrong with a waiting period for buying a gun and a background check.
Obviously private and religious schools are targets like any other school. Everyone is vulnerable.
Every school and Board of Education must be in serious planning stages for implementing the best security possible for our children. This is something that has never happened to most schools or churches in America but everyone is vulnerable. It only takes one such act next month or 10 years from now to kill people and devastate a community.
(Glenn Mollette is a national syndicated columnist whose column appears in all 50 states and over 500 media outlets. He is the author of 13 books.)

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