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Mental Health is the Issue, Not Guns and Armed Guards in Schools is not the Solution

Discussion in 'General Gun Discussions' started by Jeff White, Dec 26, 2012.

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  1. tpaw

    tpaw Well-Known Member

    Alaska 444 States:

    Perhaps I think from the standpoint of where I live, NYC. We have a police force of 35,000 plus. Probably larger than most third world countries have army's, and more than most towns here in the US have people.
    Allocation of officers to secure schools would not be a burden here, in fact, it's being done now in many areas, and will continue.
    Many municapalities do not have that advantage and I understand that.
    Inteligent planning by qualified personel is essential where resources are limited. Parental In-put is essential. Go to school board meetings. Take an active interest! Show up, ask questions! Apathy is our worst enemy. Parents need to get involved in their childrens education and extra curricular activities.
    Perhaps cutting back on tax dollars for perks in certain school districts is a start. What perks? It's up to the parents to decide. After all, it's your tax dollars that pay for it all.
    Just my opinion guys. There is no ONE answer to the problem.
  2. Alaska444

    Alaska444 member

    Interesting, Ohio is allowing a pilot program of arming teachers after 3 day class.

  3. 9MMare

    9MMare Well-Known Member

    If it was my kid and *if* I was worried about a mad shooter killing my child in a school, I would take action to find a way to PRIVATELY raise the funds for whatever protections I deemed necessary.

    I would teach my child in the best way I could how to react in such a situation. I would get the school board to allow teachers to cc if they chose to.

    *I* have nieces and nephews in NJ...a very un-gun-friendly state. The oldest are now shooting skeet and practicing and know how to use guns safely. My eldest nephew likes shooting ARs and I'm saving to buy him one (but he's only 16) I reinforce this along with their parents. We do these things together. *I* teach my eldest niece about self-defense (the other is 6). *I* am not unduely worried about them in public schools. I do worry about lots of other things.

    However *since these school shootings are no more common than being struck by lightning or being mauled to death by a dog,* I would not subject my fellow Americans to footing the bill for it because that goes against my beliefs in the Constitution.

    I would accept that the ultimate protection of myself and my family was OUR responsibility, not the local or state or federal govts'.

    And you did NOT answer my question. I respected you enough to do so.
  4. 22-rimfire

    22-rimfire Well-Known Member

    Cost is always a factor in everything we do. Life is full of risks. The chances of injury or death are probably greater driving or riding in a car on the way to school. I think the last time I noticed, there were nearly 1000 highway deaths this year in my state. School shootings.... 20 kids (nationwide); that's 20/300+ million people in the US.
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2012
  5. tpaw

    tpaw Well-Known Member


    Please re-state your question, I'll be more than happy to answer it to the best of my ability. Thank you.
  6. JohnBT

    JohnBT Well-Known Member

    I'd like a show of hands please. Who believes the reason that school buses don't have seatbelts is due to anything other than money? And don't dare mention air bags.

    Speaking of mental health and community living, I had a client referred to me earlier this year for a vocational evaluation. Nice guy with pretty good skills, but because of his history the private/treatment high school was required to send 2 adults with him and at least one of them had to be watching him at all times.

    But I'm retired now. 37 years was at least 7 years too long. They kept cutting every agency's budget year after year and I see they're still cutting.

  7. hso

    hso Moderator Staff Member

    We closed mental health institutions because of abuses and expense in the 80s. What many pointed out was that there was no way to care for many of the people being abandoned in the closings. What rational person thinks that someone that has to be supervised to take their medication will continue to take their medication without supervision. Group homes with supervision helped many, but others simply weren't suitable for them and were also abandoned because of economics and "principle". Homeless rates skyrocketed after patients were put out on the street.

    Add that the stigma against mental health care is still strong in this country and we have a poor system for helping those most in need and protecting the public from those we most need to protect ourselves from.

    Finally, even if you have private insurance that will cover a teen and permit you to get them in an institution for care, that insurance will not cover an adult family member. The blogger anarchistsoccermom posted "Thinking The Unthinkable" about how things had to go before her son was institutionalized. I have a colleague who's 15 year old son began "acting out" a year ago. We talked about his behavior from time to time since I have a daughter of similar age and a son who's older. When he told me several weeks ago that his son had made threats about killing kids in his HS by taking a knife or gun or even gasoline they'd finally picked up the phone and had him taken to a local private in-patient facility. He also pointed out that when they realized this was their last resort they also realized it was probably 9 months later than when they should have done it. "How do you cook a lobster without all the fuels? Turn the heat up a little bit at a time.", he said. We talked about a parents love for a child "blinding" them to the serious nature of the child's problems. We talked about denial also. We talked about how even after you see there's something more than teen challenges to authority going on how the process of getting counseling for a kid can be challenging (I walked that path with my son after he ran away from his mother's) and how that can even cloud you to seeing the greater problem.

    It isn't easy to get help for your kid if they have personality or mental disorders that are dangerous. It isn't easy because you don't want them to be sick, because you don't want the neighbors or family to see them as sick, because you don't have the money or the community doesn't have the resources or they tell you that the police will handle it when they can't.
  8. Alaska444

    Alaska444 member

    So true HSO. I spent two years working with autistic kids for two years before I went to med school. I also spent a summer working at Boston Mental Institution one to one with a criminally insane client between my first and second year of med school. This person had stabbed a woman in the back in self defense. Yes, he was insane for sure.

    There are indeed people that benefit from in patient hospitalization. There are also many who truly are a danger to themselves or others. The homeless problem in America is mainly a combination between those that have drug abuse issues and the mentally ill. There is no law against being crazy. The only time that anyone can intervene is when there is objective evidence of a danger of harm to themselves or others.

    With these school shooters, often times they hit the radar for being strange or different, but they don't commit any acts that puts them in the other categories where intervention is indicated.

    I believe that there is an even deeper failure of parents who don't have any clue what their kids are doing. Thinking again of the huge number of guns that the Columbine kids had in their homes. I can't imagine that happening in my home since there were not any off limit places in my home. My kids did not have the presumption of privacy outside of hygiene of course. I looked and searched my kids rooms to know what they were doing when they were teenagers. I did intervene on my own on a couple of occasions. Parents are still part of this loop. If the cops can find much evidence after the fact, where were the parents before the fact?
  9. Skribs

    Skribs Well-Known Member

    I disagree with armed guards, but I have to say giving a few teachers training and letting them carry would be a far cheaper way to provide a quicker end for an active shooter in our schools.
  10. awgrizzly

    awgrizzly Well-Known Member

    I don't like the way security guards was immediately dismissed as crazy without consideration. I don't consider additional gun laws a better suggestion, or one that would have any immediate effect. If a weapon ban was put in place, what about all the guns already available, what about the fact that almost all of these shooters use illegally obtained guns, what about the difficulty in getting the bad guys to obey laws?

    The idea of a guard in every school may not be practical, but the idea of guards should not be dismissed. At the very least it should be an option in every school district in the nation and left for the parents to decide. Perhaps some would want to contribute toward hiring a guard. Perhaps some parents with gun training (like local vets or retired cops) would want to volunteer for guard duty. Perhaps providing some teachers training and providing a gun in a lock box or principal's desk drawer would be better than nothing. Perhaps consideration that a school gun free zone guarantees the safety of the shooter, not the children. After all, the protection of children is a priority of the parents. Entrusting politicians for this is not a good idea... might even be called crazy.

    I believe that the immediate dismissal of the concept of security guards was more an ideological response than practical. It's at least worth discussing.
  11. HorseSoldier

    HorseSoldier Well-Known Member

    There's the Dave Grossman et al argument that spree shootings by younger shooters are heavily influenced by violent video games, violent television, and violent movies.

    If the 2nd Amendment can be subjected to restrictions like NFA related tax stamps and such, what about the idea of similarly infringing the 1st Amendment and impose a tax penalty on Hollywood and video game manufacturers for any product that promotes violent behavior above a certain threshold. Establish certain thresholds for glorifying violence and sadistic behavior and if they are exceeded by a game, TV show, or movie, slap a major tax penalty on it. (Ideally then use the funds for things like mental health resources for at risk teens and school security programs, but of course Congress doesn't ever do the right thing with a money supply.)
  12. Cosmoline

    Cosmoline Well-Known Member

    I agree it was ideological. A lot of us don't like the ideology of a police state, which is what armed guards and security everywhere is helping to create. Imagine a world that looks like our airports do now. Clean, tidy, tightly policed and almost entirely devoid of liberty. You are subject to search, seizure, disarmament with no due process. You have no free expression beyond very limited confines. You have limited means of movement. You are only permitted limited personal items. You are subject to observation at all times in all places. You are subject to random checks. All the while the intercom blares overhead about the need to stay vigilant.

    Getting kids used to that sort of thing in school trains them to accept it as adults. And bit by bit we become a liberty-free nation. In such a world, the mere fact of owning a few firearms becomes moot.

    The NRA is mostly on our side, but it is also in favor of brutal federal criminal laws and is not "small government" by any stretch.

    Careful about mentioning tax penalties. Because I guarantee there are a lot of cats in DC contemplating exactly that when it comes to our firearms! Have you forgotten that CJ Roberts loves him some tax penalties? Besides, I have real firearms to protect the fake ones in video games.
  13. Alaska444

    Alaska444 member

    Sorry, I understand the sentiment, but why would we support any abrogation of the Bill of Rights at all?
  14. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    awgrizzly said;

    I didn't say we shouldn't have any armed guards. I said a national program to put them in every school would not be cost effective. There are clearly some schools where armed guards or police officers are necessary to maintain order. But for the most part these schools already employ armed guards or school resource officers.

    We are not going to have properly trained and equipped security forces in our schools for minimum wage. It costs a heck of a lot of money to train and equip an effective officer. Remember, the training is continual. We don't want to trust someone who's only training was what the state requires to be an armed security guard to interact with our children and expect him or her to risk their life taking out an active shooter. If you want quality, effective people in that job you are going to have to pay a decent wage. I don't know how the schools are funded where you live, but here we pay for them with our real estate taxes. It's not unreasonable to expect the kind of security you are talking about to cost $80 to $100K per officer per year by the time you figure salary, training, equipment, the employer's share of social security, unemployment insurance premiums, health insurance etc.

    How many school buildings do we have in this country? I am sure some of them, like the high school I went to are large campuses with several buildings which would require a security force to properly secure, not a single officer. School districts would have to have more then one officer per building so that there was a reserve available to fill in when the regularly assigned officer was sick or taking a personal day.

    It's easy to say "Put an armed officer in every school building in America!" it sounds good and really upsets the antis. But the logistics of such a program boggles the mind.

    cosmoline said;

    This is another good point. The whole time I was in the Army I hated living on post because of the rights you give up there. I certainly don't want my grand kids brought up in that environment.
  15. 9MMare

    9MMare Well-Known Member

    Please see my first sentences in post # 54.
  16. Alaska444

    Alaska444 member

    Dear Jeff, what do you think of the Utah approach allowing CCW and armed teachers in public schools?
  17. tpaw

    tpaw Well-Known Member

    9MMare asks:
  18. HorseSoldier

    HorseSoldier Well-Known Member

    I think if the idea of slapping tax stamps on violent electronic media or taxing the hell out of them -- or more exactly getting that concept into the national debate about how to stop this sort of violence -- might tend to suddenly make many an anti-2A type suddenly get in touch with their inner strict Constitutional constructionists . . .
  19. 1911 guy

    1911 guy Well-Known Member

    BINGO! Start talking about internet censorship or taxing the ever-loving bejeezus out of weed in the states it's legal in, and they get all cross-eyed and even more nuts than they started out. They have no concept of rational thought and applying principles to decision making. Everything is a "feeling" or a random thought, knee-jerk reaction to what's in front of them this commercial break. Having principles means being consistent, even when you'd rather go play whack-a-mole with the other guys head.
  20. Jeff White

    Jeff White Moderator Staff Member

    I have no problem with CCW anywhere, even in schools. However if we are going to give the CCW holder a duty to act in an active shooter situation, make it part of his/her job, then we are obligated to train, equip and compensate that person. The training must be to the same standards as the police so that we could also extend civil immunity protection to them just like we do the police.
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