United States – -(AmmoLand.com)- When discussing how mass shootings are a major vulnerability for our Second Amendment rights, there is one place in particular that Second Amendment supporters should be paying attention to: Schools. These are the worst types of mass shootings for obvious reasons. Not only is there a horrific tragedy, but all too often, the victims are children with a whole life ahead of them.
The mass shooting at Columbine prompted a new push for semi-auto bans. That was bad enough for Second Amendment supporters, but the Sandy Hook mass shooting was, in some ways, a game-changer. Why? In addition to a half-dozen teachers, 20 six-year-old children were killed. This was easily the most horrific event you could imagine outside a major terrorist attack. We will never know whether that horrific act was a crime or act of madness, due to the shooter committing suicide, but that doesn’t negate the horror nor the damage done to our rights.
Let’s face it, even though Second Amendment supporters beat back efforts to reinstate a federal semi-auto ban, in some ways, the cause of freedom still lost. It wasn’t just seeing new semi-auto bans pass in several states, it also came in the form of anti-Second Amendment extremists upping their attacks.
Things went even further after Parkland. Now, any Second Amendment supporter knows how the bumbling cowards of Broward County failed to stop the shooter long before that tragic and horrific mass shooting. Those failures, though, are what Second Amendment supporters must address.
Again, it should be common sense for Second Amendment supporters to work to address school shootings. Again, if we don’t have Second Amendment-compliant solutions, then Bloomberg’s bought-and-paid-for politicians and stooges will propose their extreme anti-Second Amendment agenda – and a bunch of freaked-out soccer moms will back that agenda in order to protect their kids.
What sort of Second Amendment-complaint solutions should be considered? Making the schools harder targets is one of them. Passive security measures, like metal detectors and surveillance cameras, are one option. Another, of course, is better active security – armed security presence, including, but not limited to, willing school personnel.
This generates controversy but shouldn’t. Second Amendment supporters are all too familiar with the harsh reality that when seconds count, the police are only minutes away. Thankfully, the NRA School Shield program is being offered. This program is something Second Amendment supporters should be promoting at their local school boards – if for no other reason than to get the refusal to consider the program on the record.
But that is only part of the solution. The fact is, as was shown with Parkland, the potential shooter gave off a lot of warning signs. Some existing laws could have addressed the situation: Second Amendment supporters may not like the Gun-Free School Zones Act, but it could be a tool to at least address some potentially dangerous students (keep in mind, the Parkland shooter was caught with ammunition and knives on school grounds) – and given the expansion of concealed carry, there is much less chance a law-abiding citizen exercising their Second Amendment rights will be caught up in it. As is the case with other mass shootings, the debate over ERPOs/”red flag” laws also enters into this, along with the use (or lack of use) of civil commitment laws. It’s not ideal, but we need to focus on what is achievable, and deal with the situation as it is, not how we wish it to be.
One voice Second Amendment supporters should back is that of Andrew Pollack. Since the death of his daughter in the Parkland shooting, Pollack has founded Americans for Children’s Lives and School Safety (CLASS). None of this group’s proposals attack our Second Amendment rights, which should allow Second Amendment supporters to back them in good conscience.
Finally, if you have kids in school, this is important: Talk to them. Encourage them to say something if they see something. Make sure they are prepared to defend the Second Amendment. Find out what is going on in their schools. If they have concerns, sound the alarm.
Mass shootings in schools give anti-Second Amendment extremists the chance to make major gains. The smart move is for Second Amendment supporters to work for preventing them with a Second Amendment-compliant agenda. This isn’t being a “Fudd,” an “appeaser,” or “capitulating” to those who oppose our freedoms, it is about heading off attacks on our rights before they happen.
About Harold Hutchison
Writer Harold Hutchison has more than a dozen years of experience covering military affairs, international events, U.S. politics and Second Amendment issues. Harold was consulting senior editor at Soldier of Fortune magazine and is the author of the novel Strike Group Reagan. He has also written for the Daily Caller, National Review, Patriot Post, Strategypage.com, and other national websites.