Florida Governor Rick Scott OK’d a bill that will allow for the arming of “select school staff,” in the sunshine state today. Now, not only do parents have to worry about their kids being targeted by rogue mass shooters, but they need to worry about their kids getting caught in the crossfire of gunfights that will ensue if one happens to enter a school, as well as being shot by teachers that are having a bad day like the one who recently discharged his firearm in a classroom in Georgia.
The legislation was part of a larger package that included measures like a 3 day waiting period to buy a gun, along with raising the age limit for purchase to 21. The move is a slap in the face for all concerned parties that did not want there to be more gun violence in American schools, because now more guns will be in our classrooms, and what could possibly go wrong with this?
In a typical move, the Republicans backing this aspect of the legislation are calling it the “Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program,” which takes it’s name from Coach Aaron Feis, who heroically shielded students with his own body during the recent school shooting in Parkland, Florida. Feis died a hero, and now they are invoking his name to legitimize having people stalking school halls, armed and ready to kill.
The Florida Educators Association, the teachers’ union for the state, was strongly opposed to the move. The group’s president gave the following remarks in a letter to Rick Scott:
The provision that would arm school employees will do more harm than good. Our teachers and other school employees are ready to fiercely defend our students, but none of them should ever have to choose between shepherding students to safety or confronting an armed assailant where they are sure to draw fire toward the very students they are trying to protect.
Naturally, craven Governor Scott ignored their input and passed the law anyway like the Republican toady he is. Scott could have even vetoed the legislation by taking cover with the NRA, which unsurprisingly was against the bill due to the incredibly unbearable burden of having to wait 3 days to buy a gun that the law put forth.
The program’s language excludes most teachers, except in the case of Junior Reserve Officers’ Training Corps educators and teachers in the military or law enforcement. While that may be a comfort for some, it will be less than helpful for the parents whose children actually attend schools where these individuals are present and packing heat.
Now, some parents in Florida will have to live with the knowledge that their child is going to a school that will contain armed individuals on a daily basis. This won’t dissuade domestic terrorists from shooting up schools. These people already go in expecting to die in a fight with the cops or by their own hand most of the time. It will only put both teachers and students at risk for injury and death, as well as the inevitable lawsuits a teacher will be burdened with for either firing their gun and having an “accident” happen, or failing to fire it an not “protecting” a particularly lawsuit-happy parent’s child.