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A Teacher's Take on Arming Teachers

A Teacher's Take on Arming Teachers

Robert Freeman

I am a high school teacher. You have to work pretty hard to come up with a stupider idea than arming teachers. Arming teachers is a ruse to distract us from the real problem, which is that it’s way too easy for disturbed people to get their hands on weapons of mass destruction.

Arming teachers is a ruse to distract us from the real problem.


I would point out that in the USA 98 percent of all mass shooters are MALE. I would point out that Mental illness also exists amongst females. I would point out that Children in other Countries also watch violent movies and play violent video games. I would point out that Here in Canada, in Japan, in the UK and Germany and Australia and other countries too numerous to list, schools are “Gun free zones”. If you go into a school in Canada even the security guards do not carry guns. I would point out Children in Canada and in those other Countries also receive many of the same drugs as treatments for the same mental illnesses as do those in the USA.

As a learning experience any person deliberating on Gun Control laws, be those for or against , has to ask themselves why is it these incidents happen so much more frequently with a far greater devastating outcome in the USA than in other countries and why is it the Male that involved in such 98 percent of the time.

I can not see for the life of me see how anyone can feel that “More of the same” in the way of more guns distributed amongst the population , linked to arming SCHOOLTEACHERS with the same so as to be used to kill another in a potential shooting incident , can ever lead to a better society.


Excellent article! Sadly, I can see the gun lovers frothing at the mouth, denying all of this. I live among them…me, a mother who forbade her 3 kids from playing with toy guns, who taught them that guns were for killing and killing was wrong…now has to sit by (next door) and watch one of her kids (married to a gun lover), turn into an NRA member! Woe! No talking to gun lovers! Nothing will change their mind. Once they get the feel of that power and control, they think they are invulnerable!


“The classroom is the closest thing we have in our society to a cultural womb.”

thank you, robert freeman! you didn’t, say, so i hope you’re not a picky-picky english teacher. in fact i taught high school english as one of my majors. my little ‘hummingbird’ moniker, aka ‘Nature’s child’ seldom uses caps as a reminder that we all share equally in Nature. anyway, the classroom as our “cultural womb” is so spot on. too bad, i think that the hustles-bustle of the western model of civilization separates too soon the babe and her/his parents. why i even saw a news bit suggesting that the time for parents to find a qualified sitter for the new baby is as soon as the couple knows, “we’re pregnant!” that, in my opinion, interferes with the bonding of child and parents.

then when a tragedy like the florida incident happens, the government steps in with professionals to help the student deal with the shock and mourning. again, i feel it would be better if students, parents and teachers talk things through. anyway, doesn’t democracy depend on people working together for a common goal? the government approved “professional” will end up spending more time on red-tape paperwork because he/she must comply with one-size-fits-all job description.

gee, mr. freeman, i can tell you are a dedicated teacher who has his head in the right place. so many young teachers cannot escape the imposed teach-to-the-test paradigm. that’s not education; it’s indoctrination! the governments approach education as a cost whereas dedicated teachers see education as a sacred responsibility from one generation to the next. i think you’d agree, robert, that the most important person in the school is not the principal, not even the coach or teacher, but the student! after all, isn’t education all about those seekers of knowledge?


But no one, at least that I’ve seen, is advocating the mandatory arming of teachers. Only removal of the rules that preclude them from exercising that right while on school grounds. It’s not as though all teachers will be armed, & neither the students in the classroom, nor any would-be school shooters, would know which teachers are carrying & which aren’t. And that’s the point; the fact that any potential would-be shooters could no longer count on schools being defenseless targets would itself serve as a deterrent. Not to mention (at least) the potential for life-saving measures to be taken against a school shooter immediately, rather than having to wait precious minutes for cops to arrive.
And referring to the rifles now legally available to the general public as “weapons of mass destruction,” etc., is gross hyperbole. It’s a misnomer to even refer to them as “assault rifles,” given that selective fire modes & anything above 10-rd magazines are prohibited.

This is my opinion…Our culture is struggling to birth a paradigm shift, and the throes of it are being felt in strange ways. Male persons are both being taught that “manliness” is expected of them, but that manliness is “bad,” causing a continual cognitive dissonance. Females have figured out that they are just as strong as men in many ways, and just as smart, but they are being used as a way for men to ventilate pent up rage, thus creating a raping mentality in society. Women are expected to be strong but yet are used as prey and sacrificial lambs. We worship guns, violence, military, money, power, etc. All the soft stuff is rejected, i.e., art, music, poetry, philosophy, nature, etc.

Our militaristic government structure uses/exploits our young–both male and female–to promote empire; but it does nothing to improve the conditions of the average person, and is at the same time, degrading our environment. The rich and corporations are the beneficiaries. Our young are brainwashed into believing that violence, war, guns, power, are the solution to the world’s problems. Yet, obviously, these are not.

A state of confusion is prevalent. A chronic double bind is making us all crazy: Be loving and caring of your spouse and children–but be masculine and strong and violent and heartless and ruthless toward someone else’s children and spouse. Be soft–but be penalized if you are soft. Don’t be soft–but be penalized if you’re not soft.

Our planet is out of control…what will change it?


well, i don’t think our planet is “out of control” so much as one species of control freaks that is out of control. yes! our planet is suffering from human profit-motivated greed and hubris. if we can’t figure this out, don’t worry, Nature has been at this for less than 14 billion years. Nature is patient and She learns from her mistakes. In time She shall heal!


I wholeheartedly agree with you and appreciate your comment.

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Arming teachers is one of the most insane ideas I have ever heard. They would rather have even MORE guns in society rather than even banning bumper stocks!


A NRA lover for sure you are, you are.

They are so insecure only their guns make them feel important, and they are not.

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Why doesn’t society talk ( or better promote) more in person connectiveness rather than use of a computor? All jobs today ( even minimum wage ones) require people to use a computor. We have become a disconnected society defined by individuals or small sub societies. Many ( the majority ) of people with mental “illness” are not violent- in fact over one third of the US population has mental “illness” at any given time. Why not talk about mental wellness and connectivity as a mother of a boy killed at Sandy Hook said during a conference with other parents and yes, Dump and Devious.

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This is is an obviously stupid troll.

And so, at best, the shooter picks another target. But, hey! At least the dead kids won’t be in our schools, right? Better to have them gunned down at the mall, right? Unacceptable.

Immediately after the shooter has already killed some number of victims. Unacceptable.

Really? Semantics? Dear Parent: your child wasn’t killed with an “assault weapon.” It was a “sporting good.”

An “obviously stupid troll”? I offered reasoned arguments with no ad hominem or gratuitous insults; I didn’t impugn anyone’s motives or sincerity. And you accuse me of trolling?

at best, the shooter picks another target. But, hey! At least the dead kids won’t be in our schools, right? Better to have them gunned down at the mall, right? Unacceptable

.Of course it’s better if no innocent people are gunned down anywhere. But unfortunately, we live in a world with bad people, sick people, who want to hurt others, and those kinds of people, if determined enough, will find a means of inflicting damage. There are plenty of measures we could (and should) take to protect our homes, schools, workplaces, etc., which don’t involve infringing the rights of peaceful, law-abiding citizens to purchase & possess effective means of defending life, liberty & property, as is our right to do.

Ok… but you’re the one arguing that they should have to wait even longer, for the cops to show up.
Look, clearly it would be preferable if we didn’t have to worry about sick people getting guns & getting into schools or wherever else & gunning down innocents. But unfortunately, that’s not the world we live in. Here in reality, the mere institution of a government prohibition only really affects those inclined to obey it; and most criminally insane people are not so inclined.
And moreover, we have to be willing to take some responsibility for the safety & protection of our selves, our homes, our loved ones, & communities. It’s neither possible or desirable to have our safety guaranteed by the state. If we want to live in a free society, where we get to live our lives according to our own values & wants, then we have to accept the risk & inherent danger that comes along with that freedom.
It’s the proper role of government to protect our fundamental individual rights; not to guarantee our safety. And this is why the Second Amendment was written; we each have an intrinsic, immutable right as human beings, to defend our lives, liberty, & property against initiatory force. The government has no legitimate authority to infringe upon that right by imposing barriers to our access to effective means of doing so.
Keep in mind, government only legitimately has those powers rightfully delegated to it by the governed. If you don’t have the legitimate authority to tell me I cannot own an AR-15, and neither does any other individual, then from where would the government derive such authority?
I seriously hope you try to answer that question.

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Robert Freeman, you rightly sing the praises of the great creative power of the classroom, a power to transform us for the better, through the amazing experiment of minds and whole people–children and adults–encountering each other, learning from and with each other, for the sake of true understanding. This is so precious, and praises to this universe that something as transformative as this endures, and still might expand.

I find quite thought-provoking your presentation of ancient Greece and Rome as defining two poles of possibility for our American civic world. My first reaction to this was to cry out for an alternative tradition that transcends enslavement, for, as you surely know, not only ancient Rome but also the most “democracy”- and “freedom”-loving citizens of ancient Greece yet planted their proud sandaled male feet squarely on the institution of slavery, keeping a majority of their people enslaved (yes, “their people,” in their everyday midst, even if the enslaved were very often of foreign provenance). A little familiar with the ancient Indian history of King Ashoka, the first (and only?) Buddhist emperor, my mind raced there to see if this figure and the society he nurtured then might stand a little taller than the Greeks in some significant ways–by not also standing on the ethically crippling platform of the “peculiar institution.” Ashoka’s famous Buddhist edicts of 2200 years ago, after all, have been described as “one of the first documents in history trying to… list the fundamental rights of all humans, which, throughout the years has evolved into a similar document created by the UN, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR).” (https://worldwidewalkers.wordpress.com/2013/10/03/ashokas-edicts/)
Alas, I learn Ashoka, too, presided over this special peculiarity of non-freedom, the institution of slavery, even though he did so in the midst of promoting equality of all humans, specifically including such advances as equality before the law and fairness in all relationships (he called for fair and just treatment of the enslaved, while not abolishing slavery: a mind-bending combination, if you ask me, yet certainly not without making some sense)–and even the sanctity of animal life, too. But there are and have been other societies and traditions, including Indigenous peoples on all continents and, for example, the peaceful agrarian societies that flourished in ancient eastern Europe, described by Riane Eisler as “gylanic” and “partnership societies,” documented so inspiringly by Marija Gimbutas, who have not countenanced, did not countenance anything like slavery and instead developed more profoundly egalitarian, often non-male-dominant, non-warlike, and richly creative ways of life. These, too, are exemplary; when it comes to exemplifying ways of life free of enslavement and war, they are most exemplary.

It is most obvious that this country has a major problem with the promotion of violence, the consequence of ignoring the mentally ill, the proliferation of “guns” and the seemingly ease those weapons can be acquired. I’ve watched some of my male grandchildren endlessly play the most violent video games as they have grown. Now, if those who play those games have the “maturity” (whatever that is supposed to mean in our society) to understand that a game is a game is a game and not succumb to the mind melting thought that, “Gee I wonder how it would feel in real life to kill?” The human mind is sometimes very dark and motivates actions of the body that border on the surreal. Coupling those dark thoughts in a immature mind with the readily availability of so many deadly weapons who is to say that one is the cause and the other the outcome? It seems to me that adding thousands if not millions more weapons into the school environment cannot be beneficial to those most vulnerable among us, our children. The major question citizens should be asking is, “Is this what we want for our children?” "If not, what are we going to do about it?"
We live in a society led by our war loving government (no matter which idiotic party is in power) that worships along with too many of us, absolute greed as the ultimate goal of living. Every day the major media bleats how horrible the rest of the world is and we have to take the most violent measures to force them to do our bidding. What the He$$ do you think the common folk and their children respect? Violence and greed. Until we change the priorities of our leaders who dominate the air waves we will not change the attitude of the common folk.
The theory of “American Exceptionalism” is true. We are exceptional in propaganda, greed, violence towards each other, against those we dislike, the poor, the indigent, the helpless, the druggies hooked by pharma on opioids (then when unavailable turn to street drugs), the mentally ill, and on and on and on.
Ask yourself America: Is this the kind of society you want for your children? To go to school where instead of one armed individual you are amidst several dozen, who even if “trained” cannot hit the barn door in a stressful violent scenario. Is this what you want? Your children in the crossfire(s)?

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Grading students is more than threatening enough to set some of us to a career of searching for gestures to loosen kids up.

As another point, what are the odds that teachers who wind up sitting on thumbtacks upon return to their rooms never have firearms stolen? In part, this is because teachers do not all have training and years of habits around gun security. But in part, too, it is circumstantial. On the one hand, you have one person in a usually non-threatening situation, with a whole lot to think about. On the other, you have thirty or so intermittently very alert and sharp people who might sure like to try something new and see something different happen.

No. Why do you ask?

So in other words, the people on this site are much like those at every other political site? lol
Not to be a smartass, I appreciate your welcoming. I haven’t been around here long, but I’m kind of a grizzled veteran in this arena in general. One good thing I can say about this one so far; I haven’t been unceremoniously banned for having different opinions. Yet lol.
But I’m a big believer in individual rights & equal justice, and I apply my principles consistently, so yeah, I’m already well used to all the epithets; racist, fascist, white nationalist, extremist, corporate shill, & my personal favorite, Utopian.