The recent rampage in Newport, Connecticut has the entire country talking about gun rights, safety, and the protection of young, innocent schoolchildren. Fixing the woeful measures of school protection, is a commonly held belief, across politics of all stripes. How best to protect those schoolchildren, however, has any number of suggestions, and just as many critics.
Many centrists and most Republicans support the placing of armed police, either active or retired, in schools. The reasoning goes, as police, they have received plenty of training, both with firearms, and with person-to-person interactions. Met with a threat, police’s first instinct is surely not carelessly to open fire – that is the last option, when talking and negotiating have proven ineffective. Trained to use words first, and lethal force last, is how the police operate.
While thinking about that, and attempting to find problems and flaws with police in schools, I may have inadvertently found a reason why some progressives do not want cops in schools. Much progressive rhetoric relies on the belief that authority is inherently bad, and it should always be questioned, and sometimes engaged physically.
I think here lies the crux of their problem with police in schools. How on earth could police officers who provide safe learning environments be a bad thing? While there are some progressives who actually fear the inanimate object that is a firearm, seeing a mature, responsible authority figure at school with that firearm, would tear down tenets of the progressive orthodoxy.
Students would see and interact with a policeman everyday, learning that police are not the overbearing monsters that many on the left would have the public believe. Add to that the effect of a sidearm tucked safely away in a holster, and the child learns that the gun is not the randomly-firing, crazy-tool-with-a-mind of its own, either. Opposing police in schools also creates a problem with many progressives’ claim that only highly-trained, responsible, licensed people should be allowed to have firearms at all.
If you allow children to see this same responsibility daily, and the children also grow to respect the policemen as more than just an authority (as someone who has sworn to place his own life in between the children’s’ lives and any threat) and you would cause all sorts of short-circuiting with liberal narratives. The schoolchildren will experience cognitive dissonance between the media who love to show the most atrocious police stories possible, and the friendly school protector. The children will also be able to ask the policeman questions and learn from him.
Once that sort of erosion of progressive dogma starts – where would it end? The progressives, already outnumbered, might be forced to defend more of their often illogical and baseless claims, in futile attempt to remain relevant. Why it could be the end of the entire progressive false reality. To me, the positives far outweigh the imagined negatives, and the course is clear – show the children we care enough to protect them from both evil threats, and the misguided progressive claim that guns are inherently evil, and that people should not be able to protect themselves.