Finally, Florida has moved to let teachers carry guns at schools. In an overwhelming vote, the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission has recognized what the Crime Prevention Research Center has been arguing for years. This AP story was carried in hundreds of news outlets:
The Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School Public Safety Commission voted 13-1 to recommend the Legislature allow the arming of teachers, saying it’s not enough to have one or two police officers or armed guards on campus. Florida law adopted after the Feb. 14 shooting that left 17 dead allows districts to arm non-teaching staff members such as principals, librarians and custodians — 13 of the 67 districts do, mostly in rural parts of the state. . . .
Currently, teachers in 28 states can carry firearms, according to the Crime Prevention Research Center, a conservative nonprofit organization. District approval is required in most states and restrictions and training requirements vary.
The 15-member commission, which has been meeting periodically since April, will present a report to Gov. Rick Scott, incoming Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Legislature by Jan. 1.
The commission includes law enforcement, education and mental health professionals, a legislator and the fathers of two slain students. . . .
The point that “it’s not enough to have one or two police officers or armed guards on campus” is an argument that we have made many times. Officers have a very difficult job. Putting a uniformed officer to guard a school is not only very costly, but people who are readily identifiable as guards are the ones initially targeted by the attacker.
The benefit of our research is that it makes it harder for gun control advocates to claim that there are problems with teachers being able to carry guns. Gun control debates are usually about things that might go wrong, but we have a lot of experience so it isn’t necessary to guess about what will happen. One can point to what happens to school insurance premiums and fears about accidents or people misusing their guns.