As the country debates what changes need to be made in national gun laws, a prominent Republican is now urging schools to arm all teachers as a way to prevent future school shootings.
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich said on Fox & Friends Tuesday morning that the solution to mass shootings at schools is to assure that teachers are packing heat:
“I think the only long-term solution, depending on the size of the school, is a minimum of six to eight teachers and administrators who are trained in the use of firearms and have conceal carry permits and are prepared to defend the kids.”
Gun free zones such as currently exist at public schools, Gingrich added, are another cause of school shootings:
“I thought the sheriff from Florida said it perfectly when he said we have experimented with the gun free zone, it’s called a school.
“Every school in the country is supposed to be a gun free zone. If gun control worked, how come it didn’t work? We have to be realistic. We are not going to confiscate guns on the scale to make us a disarmed country.”
While Gingrich and the NRA may advocate more guns as a way to counter the threat of mass shootings, the facts are not on their side.
In 2013, Mother Jones did a study of 62 mass shootings in the United States over the past 30 years, and what they found certainly doesn’t support the plan Gingrich is advocating:
“Among the 62 mass shootings over the last 30 years that we studied, not a single case includes evidence that the killer chose to target a place because it banned guns. To the contrary, in many of the cases there was clearly another motive for the choice of location.”
Also, many law enforcement professionals say more guns in more hands when a shootings starts would only make the situation much worse:
“Veteran FBI, ATF, and police officials say that an armed citizen opening fire against an attacker in a panic-stricken movie theater or shopping mall is very likely to make matters worse.”
While there may not be any easy solutions to the problem of school shootings, it seems that adding even more firearms to the equation would only create new dangers for our children.