Arms Race at Elementary Schools

NewtownMournsOnly the National Rifle Association could find a way to make the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre a marketing moment.

At a press conference, Wayne LaPierre, the NRA’s executive vice president, argued that the most effective way to protect our children from horrors like the Connecticut school shooting is to provide armed security personnel at all schools.

“We need to have every single school in America immediately deploy a protection program proven to work — and by that I mean armed security,” LaPierre said, reading from a prepared statement.

The logical extension of LaPierre’s argument is that schools must engage in an arms race with potential school shooters of every age.

A security officer toting what normal people think of as a  “gun” won’t provide much security when faced with a teenager wielding an automatic or semi-automatic weapon with clips containing hundreds of bullets.  So the security officer will have to tote an automatic or semi-automatic weapons with clips containing hundreds of bullets.  (Think of the gun sales!)

If the kiddies are caught in the cross fire, we can arm them with guns and teach them to defend themselves. Or we can equip each student, teacher and administrator with a flak jacket and running shoes.

LaPierre says the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun.

But why should any guy have an automatic or semi-automatic weapon with clips containing hundreds of bullets?

The obvious answer to the problem is and has always been to ban automatic and semi-automatic weapons and clips containing hundreds of bullets – which collectively exist only to kill people on a massive scale and should have no place in modern society.  There is no other answer – our weak-willed and easily-bribed elected officials must enact reasonable gun control

The idea that the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution sanctions this type of insanity is at best a flawed reading of the document and, at worst, a cynical ploy by mercenaries who have no discernable  sense of decency.

LaPierre was interrupted twice by protesters shouting anti-NRA slogans and bearing banners in front of his podium, including one that said “NRA killing our kids.”

Adam Lanza shot 20 children and six adults before taking his own life at Sandy Hook Elementary in Newtown, Connecticut.  He  killed his mother before arriving at the school.

Not surprisingly, the British Broadcasting Corporation reportedly preceded its radio report on LaPierre’s statement with the caution: THIS IS NOT A JOKE.

Children in elementary school often read fairy tales like, The Emporer Has No Clothes.  The  NRA is now standing naked before the American public.  It is the marketing arm of the gun lobby and nothing else.

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The Biggest Workplace Bully: Gun Violence

Some guy walks into a movie theater and shoots 71 people …

It sounds like a joke waiting for a punch line. But the joke is America’s lack of credible gun control and the inane theory advanced by America’s gun lobby that the U.S. Constitution guarantees any American the right to own an AR-15 assault rifle.  The reality is that gun violence in the workplace traumatizes not only the direct victims but also bystanders, police and paramedics, and the workers who witness it.

James Holmes, a 24-year-old graduate student armed with an AR-15 assault rifle, burst into a Colorado movie theater’s screening of The Dark Knight Rises, set off tear gas canisters and opened fire – killing 12 people and wounding 58 others. He also had a Remington 870 12-gauge shotgun and a 40-caliber Glock handgun.

Police arrested him near his parked car in the back of the movie theater. Another 40-caliber Glock handgun was found in the vehicle, and more than a thousand rounds of ammo. In recent days, Holmes had purchased 6,000 rounds of ammo over the internet.

Holmes, a floundering graduate student, was wearing a ballistic helmet, a gas mask, a throat protector, a tactical ballistic vest, a groin protector and ballistic leggings. Holmes had colored his hair red and told federal authorities he was the psychotic Batman villain “the Joker.”

He surrendered without incident.

There was no shortage of tears on Friday, including police officials traumatized by the massacre and movie theater employees  reeling from a workplace that had become a bloody battleground.

The dead included a six year old girl named Veronica.