'Armed Security' at Schools Part of the Future?

"The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," the NRA's Wayne LaPierre said.

In an amazing Friday morning press conference in Washington DC, the National Rifle Association broke its weeklong silence following the horrific shooting of 26 people at a school in Newtown, CT and called for a surge of gun-carrying "good guys" around American schools.

NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre called for a new kind of American domestic security revolving around armed civilians, arguing that "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun."

Extra police officers were posted at Lakewood High School on Friday after Lakewood Police learned of a rumor about threatened violence there.

The unsubstantiated threat, spread on social media, was that there would be a shooting at the school.

In Lakewood, it doesn't seem as if armed security in the schools is permanent.

In his press conference, the NRA president pushed for more armed security in schools around the country.

"We care about our president, so we protect him with armed Secret Service agents," LaPierre said. "Members of Congress work in offices surrounded by Capitol Police officers. Yet, when it comes to our most beloved, innocent, and vulnerable members of the American family, our children, we as a society leave them every day utterly defenseless, and the monsters and the predators of the world know it, and exploit it."

LaPierre's speech was a call to supporters to mobilize around a new vision of American domestic security, at a time when voices for gun control are steadily rising. On Friday morning before the press conference, President Obama released a video (above) citing a petition by hundreds of Americans calling for swift action.

At the grassroots level, groups like Newtown United, a group of Newtown neighbors, are working to address major issues related to the tragedy, including gun control, violent media, mental health and legislation.

Newtown locals responded to the NRA press conference. Suzy DeYoung, a Newtown resident for nine years who has three children, said LaPierre's speech was playing to people’s fears.

“People are much smarter than this,” DeYoung said. “He is saying we need to be protected from guns by more guns. This lack of logic speaks for itself, and I truly believe the response you are abut to see from parents all around the world will offer better commentary than I ever could."

Joanna Zachos, a mother in Sandy Hook, CT said that while she supports an increase in gun control and personally does not believe in guns at all, that the larger problem goes "way beyond that."

"The problem we have is our immunity to violence as a society as a whole," she said. "Violent video games, violent movies, addiction to horror films. We've developed immunity to violence and violent images."

LaPierre also lamented violence in video games, music videos and "blood-soaked" films. But his central solution seemed to be a great mobilization of gun-carrying "good guys," a term he used repeatedly but did not define, who might be more present and respond more quickly than police.

"If we truly cherish our kids, more than our money, more than our celebrities, more than our sports stadiums, we must give them the greatest level of protection possible," LaPierre said. "And that security is only available with properly trained, armed 'good guys'."

LaPierre, who was interrupted twice by protesters who held signs in front of TV cameras, made a direct call for local action.

"I call on every parent. I call on every teacher. I call on every school administrator, every law enforcement officer in this country, to join with us and help create a national schools shield safety program to protect our children with the only positive line of defense that’s tested and proven to work," he said.

LaPierre did not take questions from reporters, and did not acknowledge the protesters.

Gina J. December 23, 2012 at 01:05 PM
That is like saying the only way to fight cancer is with cancer. This world is really whacked out
Ryan Salo December 23, 2012 at 02:00 PM
Armed guards can't be effective at stopping armed wackos... We should take the guns from the cops, the guards at stores and banks, and the secret service... Let's see how the world would work if only the wackos could have guns. Some people are so afraid of guns they are blind to the possibility that they actually save people everyday. Let's protect our kids as much as our money in the banks.
Joe Slops December 23, 2012 at 04:03 PM
Between 1955 and 1975, the Vietnam War killed over 58,000 American soldiers – less than the number of civilians killed with guns in the U.S. in an average two-year period. In the first seven years of the U.S.-Iraq War, over 4,400 American soldiers were killed. Almost as many civilians are killed with guns in the U.S., however, every seven weeks. Firearm-related deaths and injuries result in estimated medical costs of $2.3 billion each year – half of which are borne by U.S. taxpayers. Once all the direct and indirect medical, legal and societal costs are factored together, the annual cost of gun violence in America amounts to $100 billion.
The original Bill December 23, 2012 at 04:22 PM
2009 Fort Hood Shooting If there’s any argument against the idea that trained people with weapons have the ability to stop this sort of thing, it’s the Fort Hood Shooting. One gunman killed 13 people and wounded another 29 on a military base. Almost everyone he shot was a trained member of the military or police force. He had a shoot out with police, which he won, and continued to shoot more people. 2011 Tuscon Shooting Gabby Giffords was shot at a public event in a gun-friendly state and one of the men who helped subdue Loughner was carrying a gun. You know how they stopped the shooter? He had to reload, at which point there was an opening for people to tackle him. He was not shot, he was tackled and held down by several people in the crowd. If that’s not an argument for smaller clips, I don’t know what is. 2012 Empire State Building Shooting 11 people were shot, one by the gunman, one was the gunman himself, and 9 people who were shot by the police trying to get the gunman. Yes, more guns are clearly the answer to keeping people from being hurt. Geesh
Terry Meehan December 23, 2012 at 05:32 PM
"the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." This is a clever soundbite, but they are both guys with guns who can buy a 30-bullet-clip, semi-automatic flesh-penetrating gun at Walmart. You know, the ones we need for deer hunting.
SHAWN WITMER December 23, 2012 at 07:09 PM
Given the "more is better" logic of Mr. LaPierre's position, I wonder how that logic might be applied to trying to control which countries are permitted to produce and stockpile nuclear weapons. He would seem to imply that the only thing that stops bad guys/countries from using nuclear weapons is that good guys/countries have nuclear weapons. So why do we attempt to "control" access to those particular weapons? is an ounce of prevention worth a pound of cure with respect to nuclear weapons but not the case with respect to assualt rifles and large clips, etc.? I wonder as I wander.
Dr. Larry Keller December 23, 2012 at 11:57 PM
Seems we have no sense of history. If more guns made a community safe then Dodge City in the 1870's should have been the safest community possible. Turns out it probably had the highest homicide rate in history. Seems the community was made safe by disarming people rather than arming them. Matt Dillon and other U. S. Marshalls pursued the most reasonable and effective policies. I have no problem with hunting - my grandfather made the best hossenfeffer from rabbits he hunted - or even with handguns in the home that are not automatic weapons. I do have problems with guns in public places and prefer the Marshall Dillon Rule of weapon free public space.
Robert Mihaly December 24, 2012 at 04:36 AM
I have no doubt that if NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre found himself in the middle of a shootout, even if he had a concealed weapon, he would be paralyzed with fear, and at the end, he would have to change his underwear. Talk's cheap. More guns = more dead.
Gina J. December 24, 2012 at 12:43 PM
Steve December 24, 2012 at 09:59 PM
We the people are paying 5+ million dollars for the President to vacation in Hawaii, the Senate and Congress are all home for the holidays, yet all we hear about is the fiscal cliff is approaching with no compromise in sight. You sir, are a hipocrite. We ban certain dogs because of the way they look, and turn your head away from them when taken. Status Quo is we have EVERY right to own guns, but not certain dogs. Only blood on my hands come from clenching my fist, listening to people like you. And no, I am not a terrorist, just a gun owning AMERICAN per my constitutional rights. Now ,get over it.
kris December 25, 2012 at 02:53 PM
Digging their own holes, all of them. Good riddance. See ya, NRA. Guns are not the answer. Ever.
kris December 25, 2012 at 03:04 PM
By all means, own a gun. You just don't need to have one that kills over a dozen people in just a minute or two. The fact that you're able to walk into Walmart or Gander Mountain and get one like that at your leisure, which can then be stolen from your home or misused by a family member or friend, or you if your mental state ever falters (which could potentially happen with any one of us) - this all outweighs the fact that you, yourself might be a responsible person in the here and now. If they're readily available, they are common in number and more likely to be misused and kill many innocent people. If we lessen the number of that type of weapon, the number of these kinds of tragedies will go down. It's simple logic. It's a sacrifice that all of us should be willing to make as a member of the greater community. Think beyond yourself and your solitary rights to provide what's best for our society as a whole.


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