Last week, Parkland, Florida, became the scene of the latest front in the national struggle against gun violence when an expelled student returned to their former school and opened fire, killing 17 people and wounding many more.
In the aftermath of that shooting, numerous students from the school have emerged as vocal advocates for gun control. After all, on a very basic level, if the Parkland shooter had been unable to obtain the automatic weapon with which he carried out the attack then there would have been no shooting.
Even still, some Republicans refuse to even seemingly accept the possibility that common sense gun control is a good idea.
In that light, the Minority Leader in the Colorado State House, GOP Rep. Patrick Neville, has re-introduced a bill to allow the concealed carry of firearms in schools. Firearms are currently allowed to be carried onto school grounds in the state of Colorado, but they must be locked in the weapon owner’s cars.
Thinking about Neville’s proposition for not long at all reveals how ridiculous it is. In an active shooter situation, if there are multiple shooters, then it’s going to be that much harder for law enforcement to find the actual shooter. During the time that there are multiple shooters firing off their weapons, with, no doubt, reports of shooters at various locations, the actual attacker is going to have the opportunity to injure, perhaps fatally, that many more people.
It’s not as though there are prominent incidents of a “good guy” with a gun being able to successfully stop a mass shooter. In Sutherland Springs, Texas, last year, when a shooter opened fire on a small church congregation, even though a “good guy with a gun” eventually showed up, they were unable to stop the shooter from killing over two dozen people, including many children.
In other prominent recent mass shooting situations such as the one that unfolded in Las Vegas last year at a country music festival, a “good guy with a gun” wouldn’t have been able to stop the incident from unfolding. The shooter was in an upper floor hotel room with a massive arsenal firing on the crowd down below. He wasn’t accessible to a “good guy with a gun.”
That says nothing for the fact that expecting teachers to, on top of their normal duties, carry a firearm is ridiculous and something that teachers themselves have spoken out against in the face of the latest surge of the idea after Parkland.
Neville has introduced a version of his bill every year since taking office back in 2014. He himself was, remarkably, a sophomore at Columbine High School at the time of the infamous 1999 mass shooting, making him in a solid minority in terms of the reaction of shooting survivors to the proliferation of guns in the United States.
Parkland students have, as mentioned, become vocal advocates in favor of gun control in the aftermath of the shooting there.
Among those who have done so is student Rose Gonzalez, who delivered an impassioned speech in favor of gun control at a rally last Saturday in Fort Lauderdale.
Although it’s far from a given that Neville’s bill will become law, on the national stage, those who believe similarly to him have much greater sway. The president and other members of Republican leadership have yet to substantively move to impose common sense gun control in the aftermath of the Parkland shooting.
Trump has opted to focus on reforming the nation’s mental healthcare system in response to the shooting.
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