Letters to the Editor

Thursday, Dec 20 2012 11:00 PM

And just how would that work?

By The Bakersfield Californian

I'm trying to garner knowledge and maintain objectivity with regard to the current discussion about gun violence. So rather than simply dismiss the idea of arming teachers as a solution totally void of reason, I'd like to ask some questions:

How much are you willing to invest in this inane premise? Do you want to arm all teachers and administrators, or just a select few? Should this be voluntary or are you willing to legislate mandatory participation? (After all, it would be a shame if the children in one classroom were protected by a Bushmaster-wielding kindergarten teacher while the poor third-grade students were at the mercy of a conscientious objector.) How much are you willing to spend on background checks, psychological examinations and training? How often would these educators be required to recertify and submit their weapons for inspection?

What kind of guns are you willing to buy for these teachers and administrators? (I would think there should be some kind of standard weapon suitable for this purpose, but you certainly can't expect teachers to purchase them -- not on their salaries.) And should these guns be worn on their persons as visible deterrents, or carefully locked away from inquisitive students?

Which brings us to potential liability. In case a student is accidentally killed while a teacher is shooting at an invader, how is that settled in court? Or if a secretary is having a really bad day and mistakenly shoots a threatening but unarmed Goth, how do you want to pay for that lawsuit? And what if a rambunctious, out-of-control child wrests the gun from his sixth-grade teacher's holster (or locked drawer) and opens fire on the students who made fun of him at recess? Who would be liable for that fiasco? Inquiring minds want to know.

Pamela Wildermuth

Bakersfield

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