Updated 12/19/2012 08:58 PM
Gun rights advocacy group suggests arming educators in wake of Conn. shooting
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RALEIGH—Currently, schools are gun-free zones. In the wake of tragedy, like the one the nation witnessed on Friday in Connecticut at Sandy Hook Elementary School, some people say it is time to change our school gun policies.
“Allowing conceal handgun permit holders who have proven themselves sane, sober and law abiding, to carry conceal to protect students will help to deter those crimes,” said Paul Valone, with Grass Roots North Carolina.
People are lining up on both sides of the debate on how to lessen gun violence. In North Carolina, one of the state's largest teacher unions said they don't like the idea of arming educators.
“[It is] not a good idea. I don't think you would find any educator or official who would support coming into schools with guns,” said Mark Jewell with the North Carolina Association of Educators.
These are questions that lawmakers will face when they come back to Raleigh next month. Right now, legislative leaders say they do not anticipate an appetite to make big changes when it comes to the Second Amendment.
“I do not anticipate any sweeping changes because of the events we have seen in Connecticut or Auroa or anything in the past year or two,” said NC Speaker of the House Rep. Thom Tillis.
On Wednesday, President Barack Obama announced a national task force to look at gun issues, acknowledging that most gun owners are responsible, law abiding citizens and answers to stopping gun violence won't come easily.
However, the fact that the problem is complex can no longer be an excuse for doing nothing. Gun rights supporters say they hope that the answers will not come in the form of bans, but rather expanding gun zones.
“We are trying to give educators something better than their bodies to shield students from bullets,” said Valone.
Tennessee, Michigan, and South Carolina are considering legislation that would allow educators to be armed. Guns are allowed on school grounds in some Texas schools already.