Get Guns Out of Our Schools


Ann Arbor Public Schools drew ire from many pro-gun activists last spring when it announced it would ban guns in its schools. The school district was almost immediately sued.

Guns in America is not a new topic, nor one easily explained. It is extremely difficult to sway someone’s passions about this issue. The plague of gun violence and lax interpretation of the Second Amendment is as American as apple pie. In no other developed country on Earth is gun violence as prevalent as it is here, and no Western country loses as many souls to guns as we do.

This is our problem, and we must fix it.

The Second Amendment has its reasons for being in the Constitution, and some of them are valid. A militia to protect the people for example, however, few would argue that the founders of this country intended to preserve the rights of mad men to kill scores of innocent people. That would be ludicrous. If we must have guns in our country, at least let them be licensed (in the full sense of the word, properly and after painstaking background checks) to responsible members of society.

Even U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia said the government may enforce restrictions on guns. As quoted by NPR’s Jack Lessenberry, Scalia wrote in the decision for District of Columbia vs. Heller (the case which established an individual’s right to bear arms via the Second Amendment):

“Nothing in our opinion should be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings.”

In schools we are “trained,” if a gunman were to enter, to either crouch and hide or run as fast as we can.

After the numerous school shootings in the last two decades, this formula is, taken on its own, completely unacceptable, leaving children’s lives up to chance.

Some things that have to do with life and death are left up to chance. That’s simply how it is. However, we as a nation seem to have given up and chosen to leave to chance what we should leave to the rational brains we were endowed with. Instead of taking the strikingly sensibly measures to make our schools safer, we have simply buried our heads in the sand.

How is that American?

Guns in schools make no sense for several reasons, number one being students and parents can’t tell a “good guy” from a “bad guy”. How do you know the man carrying a handgun in a holster isn’t just some random person there to wreak havoc a couple seconds later? Allowing someone to carry a gun in school only causes hesitation if a real situation arises. Students and teachers must figure out if this person is a friend or foe, and that hesitation would likely cost more lives.

Statistically the amount of gun accidents in the US is horrendous (15,000 people went to the hospital for non-lethal accidents in 2007). Anywhere where there are guns the potential to get hurt or killed increases immensely (their sole purpose is to maim). Increasing the amount of guns in schools only increases the likelihood of severe accidents. Also, what’s to stop someone from simply grabbing the good guy’s gun? It’s happened before.

To protect ourselves we must do something; sitting and letting this continue to happen is not a valid option.

We must strictly enforce gun regulations. I know this will chill the blood of some people, but if you are a non-criminal person with no mental illnesses, what do you have to fear? We must never allow guns in schools. They simply endanger the lives of those present. Any gun is an unsafe gun. These changes will make us safer, and after all of the mass shootings and lives lost to gun violence in this country, there is no better option.