Trump’s solution to school shootings: arm teachers with guns

It is the gun, its the person behind the gun and its about helping people before they ever reach that point, said a mother whose son succumbed at Sandy Hook elementary

Donald Trump has said he will consider a proposal to arm school teachers in an attempt to prevent mass shootings, a move certain to prove fiercely divisive.

The US president, holding a listening session at the White House with survivors of last week’s Florida school shooting and others affected by gun violence, claimed that allowing airline pilots to carry and disguise guns had demonstrated the measure could be a success.

” It merely works when you have people very adept at use firearms, of which you have many ,” Trump said during an emotionally searing session on Wednesday that, inordinately, was broadcast live on national television.” It would be both teachers and coaches .”

Referring to Aaron Feis, a football coach who utilized his body as a shield to protect a student during the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas high school in Parkland, the president continued:” If the coach-and-four had a pistol in his locker when he ran at this guy- that coach was very brave, saved a lot of lives, I suspect.

Julia Cordover, the student body president at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School wipes away tears during a listening session hosted by Donald Trump at the White House. Photograph: Xinhua/ Barcroft Images

” But if he had a handgun, he wouldn’t have had to run, he would have shot him, and that would have been the end of it. This would only plainly be for people who are very adept at handling a handgun. It’s called concealed carry, where a teacher would have a disguised handgun on them. They’d go for special training and they would be there and you would no longer have a gun-free zone. Gun-free zone to a maniac, because they’re all cowards, a gun-free zone is:’ Let’s go in and let’s assault, because bullets aren’t coming back at us ‘.”

Trump added:” An attack has lasted, on average, about three minutes. It takes five to eight minutes for responders, for the police to come in, so the two attacks is over. If you had a educator who was adept at pistols, they could very well end the attack very quickly .”

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Trump says arming educators with concealed weapons could avoid school carnages- video

Knowledge of this would act as a deterrent to a would-be attacker, Trump claimed.” You know, a lot of people don’t understand that airline pilots now, a lot of them carry firearms, and I have to say that things have changed a lot. People aren’t attacking the way they would routinely attack and perhaps you would have the same situation in schools .”

The president asked for a show of hands in the room over the proposal: some were in favour, others were against.” We can understand both sides and certainly it’s controversial ,” he acknowledged, promising to discuss it seriously.

It emerged after the shooting at Parkland that there was an armed security guard on site but he did not get the chance to engage the gunman, Nikolas Cruz, on the sprawling campus. In May 2016, during the presidential election, Trump tweeted:” Crooked Hillary[ Clinton] said that I want guns brought into the school classroom. Incorrect !”

Donald Trump with notes during a listening conference with high school students and educators at the White House on Wednesday. Photo: Carolyn Kaster/ AP

Nicole Hockley, whose six-year-old son Dylan succumbed at Sandy Hook elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut, spoke out against the idea of arming educators.” It’s not personally something that I support. Rather than arming them with a pistol, I would rather arm them with the knowledge of how to prevent these acts from happening in the first place ,” she told Trump.

Safety assessments programmes and interventions for distressed children are vital, she added.” Let’s talk about prevention. There is so much that we can do to help people before it reaches that phase, and I urge you please stay focused on that as well. It is the gun, it’s the person behind the handgun and it’s about helping people before they ever reach that point .”

Earlier during the session in the country dining room, where some speakers were tearful but composed as they recalled their experiences, Hockley also issued a challenge to the president.” This is not difficult ,” she told him.” These demises are preventable. And I implore you: consider your own children. You don’t want to be me. No mother does .”

During the session Trump also asserted that he would be “very strong” on background checks for firearm buyers as well as mental health issues. He sat in the middle of a semi-circle listening intently as six survivors of last week’s shooting and bereaved mothers from Parkland, Columbine, and Sandy Hook took turns to address him.

Donald J. Trump (@ realDonaldTrump)

Crooked Hillary said that I want guns brought into the school classroom. Incorrect!

May 22, 2016

Sam Zeif, 18, a Parkland student whose text messages with two brothers during last week’s shooting went viral, opposed back tears as he told Trump:” I turned 18 the day after. Woke up to the news that my best friend was go. I don’t understand why I can still go in a store and buy a weapon of war, an AR. I was reading today that a person 20 years old strolled into a store and bought an AR-1 5 in five minutes with an expired ID. How is it easier than i thought to buy this type of weapon? How are we not stopping this after Columbine, after Sandy Hook, sitting with a mom that lost her son? It’s still happening .”

Andrew Pollack, whose 18 -year-old daughter Meadow was killed at Stoneman Douglas, reflected the candid indignation of many when he took the microphone.” We’re here because my daughter has no voice- she was murdered last week, shot nine hours ,” he said.” How many schools, how many children have to get shot? It stops here, with this administration and me .”

Pollack, his voice rising with raw emotion, added:” It should have been one school shooting, and we should have fixed it, and I’m pissed because my daughter, I’m not going to see again .”


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