In the ongoing conversation about allowing teachers to be armed while at school we haven’t heard much from the teachers who have been patiently waiting, communicating with their school boards, and offering their carefully honed skills to protect our nation’s children by carrying concealed on the job.
The media has portrayed teachers as weak and fearful when it comes to protecting their students with safety options which have repeatedly been proven to be an effective deterrent to violent crime. I’m sure, by now, we can all agree that murderers and attempted murderers don’t care about the plastic sticker on the door stating that the building, full of innocent lives, is a gun free zone. Time and time again we watch these evil people walk right past those signs and destroy lives. Something obviously needs to change.
That leaves you to wonder, where are the teachers who want to carry concealed at school? Why aren’t they coming out of the shadows and demanding the right to protect themselves and the children in their care? I can assure you, after working for a school district for five years, these teachers are everywhere.
Part of the reason you are not hearing from them is because the media wants you to believe that such teachers do not exist. They will parade the soundbites and quotes of ten anti-gun teachers and fail to include a single pro-gun teacher. It doesn’t fit their fear mongering narrative. Another reason is that these teachers are generally busy teaching all day, and training in their off time, or serving their country a few weekends a month. They don’t have time to be a media darling. Oftentimes, they work within a system which will blackball them if they speak their mind. They are caught living between the threat of losing their job if they make their opinion public or losing their life if they are not allowed to carry a firearm for protection.
The most important reason they don’t speak up publicly is simply because what they want, what they are asking for the right to do, is carry CONCEALED. If Mr. Jones appears on the nine o’clock news demanding that he be allowed to be prepared to protect himself and his students by carrying a concealed firearm, he is no longer able to carry concealed. Everyone who sees that broadcast will know he is likely packing. He will have effectively given up his concealment by painting a giant target on himself.
A good friend of mine, who happens to also be a teacher, recently shared these concerns with me. I confidentially asked around, and just as I had expected, that teacher was not alone. Most of the teachers I spoke to were willing to look into options which exceeded the standard shelter in place drills their districts require. The following is a letter one of these teachers has written and waiting in a document file for the family to share if a tragedy ever befalls their own school.
I was a teacher , and I was very good at it. But to continue teaching, I had to live as a coward. This is my apology to the families of my students for my cowardice.
I could have made a difference. But I was a coward.
I had the well-practiced skills to make a difference. But I was a coward.
I had the training to make a difference. But I was a coward.
I had the tools to make a difference. But I was a coward.
I had the mindset to make a difference. But I was a coward.
I was afraid of losing my job.
Because I lived a very blessed life of over 60 years, I did not fear death. I was willing to fight to the death for your children, but I was denied the chance to try. Because I was a coward.
I am dead now, and so are some of your children. Because I was a coward.
I am so so so very sorry.
How was I a coward, you might ask? I lived with being a coward for many years because I was also a law abiding citizen, a good guy, a rule follower. It was against the rules for me to carry a firearm at school. I did not carry, because I was afraid of losing my job. Although I legally carried concealed almost everywhere else where it was legal - and nobody knew I was armed except those with a need to know - I did not carry at school because it was against the rules. I was not prepared to fight for your children that day, because I was afraid I could lose my job!
While so armed, I enjoyed dancing with my wife, worked on old vehicles, did manual labor, went shopping for groceries, and worshiped. While doing so, the weapons I carried never fell out of their holsters, were never brandished for show, inadvertently left in a bathroom stall, and never "went off" by themselves.
I was well trained by some of the most knowledgeable law enforcement officers in the area. I had trophies and plaques as proof of my abilities. I practiced regularly. I built a private range to practice, where I introduced many others to the enjoyable activity of safely using firearms.
And I prayed none of us would never need to use those skills.
I could have carried a concealed firearm while teaching, and nobody would have ever known. So, why did I die at school, along with some of your most precious treasures? Because Evil visited our wonderful school, and I was denied the ability to effectively fight the Evil! Remember, I was a rule follower, armed with only the suggested can of soup, but that killer was not so limited. He did not follow any rules.
I was afraid of losing my job. I was not afraid to die for your children, but since I was a good guy without a gun, more of your children died than might have. If only the rules had allowed me an effective way to fight back, I would have had a chance to save your child!
I am very, very, very sorry.
Along with my apology, I have to ask you a question. AMERICA, HOW MANY MORE CHILDREN AND TEACHERS ARE YOU WILLING TO SACRIFICE ON THE ALTAR OF POLITICAL CORRECTNESS BEFORE YOU LET THE TEACHERS FIGHT BACK WITH MORE THAN JUST A CAN OF SOUP?"
These teachers are out there. They are in every district across the nation. They love their jobs. They love their students and their communities. They are trusted by the state and federal government to carry in every other area of their lives. But, their school districts ban them from being prepared to protect themselves and their students in the most vulnerable setting, school.
Join me in getting the word out that not every teacher needs to be armed, but the ones who choose to need our support.
Blog posts are original content written by 1MMAGC moms and dads.