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Dean Minnich: Problems with arming teachers

One of the downsides to having guns around is that you get the idea that all your problems are solved.

The NRA and some of its fans actually believe that our kids will be safer if the math teacher, school media helper, custodian and the lady in the chow line are packing in case a nutcase wants to commit suicide, or some other mayhem, in a public school.

I can see the press conference now the first time some innocent kid gets plugged in study hall because the substitute teacher is shooting at an intruder, but has bad aim.

Most novices, who include most civilians, could not hit a bulletin board at 40 feet with a .32-caliber handgun. I suppose the NRA response to that would be, well give them a 12-gauge shotgun, preferably pump action, of course, with a shortened barrel.

Dredging up some memories of teachers of my youth, I cannot see Winifred Houck or Mrs. Wink with a cross-draw rig holding a .44.

Or John Pfaff with a bandolier. And knowing him, he'd have asked one of the senior boys or a member of the Projector Club to be his gun-bearer.

More than one of my contemporaries used to burgle the teacher's desk drawer for contraband gum or baseball cards that had been temporarily confiscated. Imagine what the ride home on the school bus would have been like if they'd have discovered in that same drawer the teacher's handgun.

The war chief for the NRA famously said - I think he took a line out of an old John Wayne movie - that the only thing that will stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun, but if everybody has a gun, you won't know the good guys from the bad until you see who they're shooting at.

If we're going to arm teachers and kindergarten aides - assuming budget cuts haven't sent them all home - maybe they should be required to wear white cowboy hats and sheriff's deputy badges.

Problem there is that even the bad guys seeking ultimate coolness would disguise themselves, giving up the hoodies and faking the white hat thing. Maybe the NRA has an idea about that.

Maybe we could call out the militia. Yeah, that's the ticket. All the members of the militia will agree when taking delivery of their firearm that they will be called up with short notice to take a turn walking the perimeter of the playground, or riding shotgun on field trips.

Just so no one feels left out, we can call out those not needed on playground duty to walk the borders and keep the illegals out. What's the point of having a constitutional amendment and a militia if we aren't going to put them to good use? Anyone who has already been on active service and reached the age of 60 could be excluded from the school and border duty, unless we are attacked by enemies foreign, as opposed to the enemies domestic.

Just some ideas to kick around.

Too much information: While government works hard to keep its actions secret, or at least presented in a good light, we have so much freedom of information in this country that any nut can build bombs with kitchen pots and fertilizer and assorted nails and other stuff from a hardware store.

And while grandma gets frisked when she boards a plane to go back to Florida, our government gives a free pass to a terrorist in our midst even after getting a tip from Russia, of all places.

Not enough information: That huge explosion in a fertilizer plant that almost wiped a Texas town the size of Manchester off the map could happen here, if we followed the zoning philosophies of commissioners Richard Rothschild and Robin Bartlett Frazier.

Like a lot of Texans, our freedom-loving commissioners and their backers don't like zoning. Nor do they like reporting rules set forth by what they call big government.

So as the school principal in West, Texas said, when asked why the plant was allowed to be built near residential areas, it just sort of happened because of property rights.

The plant was already there, and local government allowed the developers to put houses next to it.

Then they didn't report, as required, the amount or the danger level of the volatile explosive product stored at the plant.

You take your chances when your rugged individualism won't allow some government rules to protect citizens with planning and zoning.

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