Skip to comments.Sheriff's offer to help arm teachers gets big response
Posted on 01/11/2013 8:41:11 AM PST by Washi
Some Colorado Springs teachers responded eagerly Thursday to El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketas offer to assist with firearms training and waive charges for concealed weapons permits to enhance school security.
Were getting calls from people who say they are a teacher and they want a concealed weapons permit, said Lt. Jeff Kramer, El Paso County Sheriffs spokesman. Were getting inquiries from teachers, administrators and representatives of local school districts.
Maketa, who supports arming teachers and administrators in schools, told The Gazette about his ideas Wednesday. When the news hit the streets, the calls started.
Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper offered measured support to the idea during an interview Thursday with The Gazettes editorial board.
(Excerpt) Read more at gazette.com ...
Good intentions but make dim heads explode and wave the fee for all citizens to get an unlawful restrictive permit to exercise their guaranteed rights.
How should teachers with guns be implemented? Should all of the teachers be armed? Or maybe have an armed guard and one or two armed teachers (volunteers) as back up?
More accurately, El Paso County, Colorado has a great sheriff.
Gun Ownership - It's The Law In Kennesaw
By Jonathan Hamilton and David Burch Marietta Daily Journal Staff Writers Marietta Daily Journal
KENNESAW, Ga - Several Kennesaw officials attribute a drop in crime in the city over the past two decades to a law that requires residents to have a gun in the house.
In 1982, the Kennesaw City Council unanimously passed a law requiring heads of households to own at least one firearm with ammunition.
The ordinance states the gun law is needed to "protect the safety, security and general welfare of the city and its inhabitants."
Then-councilman J.O. Stephenson said after the ordinance was passed, everyone "went crazy."
"People all over the country said there would be shootings in the street and violence in homes," he said. "Of course, that wasn't the case."
In fact, according to Stephenson, it caused the crime rate in the city to plunge.
Kennesaw Historical Society president Robert Jones said following the law's passage, the crime rate dropped 89 percent in the city, compared to the modest 10 percent drop statewide.
"It did drop after it was passed," he said. "After it initially dropped, it has stayed at the same low level for the past 16 years."
Mayor Leonard Church was not in office when the law was passed, but he said he is a staunch supporter of it.
"You can't argue with the fact that Kennesaw has the lowest crime rate of any city our size in the country," said Church, who owns a denture-making company in Kennesaw.
The author of the ordinance, local attorney Fred Bentley Sr., attributes at least some of the decrease in crime to the bill.
"I am definitely in favor of what we did," he said. "It may not be totally responsible for the decrease, [but] it is a part."
Although he is pleased with the outcome, Bentley said he was originally opposed to drafting the law.
"I didn't think it could be written in a constitutional fashion," he said. "Obviously, it was constitutional, because the American Civil Liberties Union challenged it in court and we won."
Jones said the ACLU challenged the law in a federal court just after it was passed. In response, the city added a clause adding conscientious objectors to the list of those exempt.
Although the law is now being credited with a drop in crime, Jones said that was not the law's original purpose. He also pointed out that Kennesaw did not have a big problem with crime before.
"The crime rate wasn't that high to start with. It was 11 burglaries per 1,000 residents in 1981," he said.
According to the Kennesaw Police Department, the city's most recent crime statistics show 243 property crimes per 100,000 residents in 1998, or .243 per 1,000.
The city's crime rate continues to be far below other metro Atlanta city's with similar populations, like Decatur. In 1998, Decatur recorded 4,049 property crimes per 100,000 residents.
Jones said one motivation for the council passing the ordinance had to do with publicity.
"It was done in response to a law passed by Morton Grove, Ill., outlawing gun ownership within the city limits," he said. "Several council members were upset Morton Grove had gotten a lot of attention with their ordinance so they decided to top them.
"They figured the gun ownership ordinance would knock that city right off the front pages. They were right."
Jones said the ensuing publicity surrounding the law has given Kennesaw worldwide name recognition.
"I have been to Australia and Europe and when I tell people I am from Kennesaw they recognize the name as the place that requires everyone to own a gun," he said.
But Stephenson said the issue was not publicity-driven but issue-driven.
"We believed in the right of people to own guns," he said.
Jones said he has sold 550 copies of a 1994 book about the first-of-its-kind law, "The Law Heard 'Round the World."
He said the law in its final form has many loopholes, so not everyone is required to own a gun.
"There are many outs," he said. "When you look at it, almost anyone could fit into one of the exempted groups."
Kennesaw Police Chief Dwaine Wilson said no one has ever been prosecuted under the ordinance.
Among those exempt are residents "who conscientiously oppose maintaining firearms as a result of beliefs or religious doctrine." Others exempt include the physically and mentally disabled, paupers and those convicted of a felony.
The law contains no clause addressing punishment for violating the law. If convicted, City Clerk Diane Coker said punishment would be determined by the general penalty clause of the Kennesaw Code Ordinance - probably a fine of about $100.
Jones said the unusual law has not deterred anyone from moving to Kennesaw.
"Our population has increased just like everyone's in Georgia in the past 20 years," he said. "The law really hasn't done any harm to the city's growth."
The city's population in 1998 was recorded at 14,493 - a sharp increase over the 8,936 residents recorded in the 1990 census.
Cobb Chamber of Commerce president Bill Cooper said odd laws are typically not counted as strike against a city when a business is looking to relocate.
"These laws don't have laws don't have an impact on a company's decision to move to Cobb County," Cooper said.
"Many communities have strange laws that are out of date. Businesses look at many factors when relocating, such as quality of life, education, infrastructure and available workforce."
Bentley said the law actually may have helped business development.
"Kennesaw is home to more manufacturing businesses than any other Cobb city," he said. "Companies have said they want to be located in conservative areas."
And Kennesaw isn't the only city in Cobb with an unusual law on the books.
According to Jeff Koon, who runs a Web site specializing in funny laws, Dumblaws.com, Acworth has a ordinance requiring residents to own a rake.
In Marietta, it is illegal to spit from a car or a bus, but perfectly legal to spit from a truck.
Colorado Springs is has the largest concentrations of conservative Americans in the state of CO. I was assigned there with the Air Force in the early 1980s. They’re doing me proud!
Allowing those teachers who wish to carry do so would, ideally, necessitate the repeal of "Gun Free Zone" laws.
That in itself would give an attacker the same sense of uncertainty as concealed carry imparts to communities as a whole. (As opposed to the absolute certainty the attacker has now that there will be no guns available to stop him).
That alone is a major step in the right direction and doesn't cost the taxpayers anything.
All teachers that want to be armed. Wouldn’t want some liberal idiot waving a gun around in an unsafe manner.
Just the ones that want to be armed. Wouldn’t want some liberal idiot waving a gun around in an unsafe manner.
More accurately, El Paso County, Colorado has a great sheriff.
That's my sheriff. I live in El Paso County near Colorado Springs.
Our sheriffs have issued over 16,000 permits to carry concealed hand guns since 1995. To date, not one has ever been revoked for a firearms-related offense.
Simple: Any teacher, administrator, staff, or volunteer aide that wants to take on the responsibility of being an armed protector should be allowed and encouraged to do so.
Only teachers who want to carry and who can qualify. It is a right and license fees should be abolished for all as well as taxes on firearms, ammunition and gun safes.
How should teachers with guns be implemented?
I agree ... I spent two years teaching high-school. I wouldn't have wanted to carry openly, as I would have been to obvious a target.
I would never let the students know,
Don't kid yourself ... there are very few secrets in school. The kids will find out, somehow. "Mr. Bustard and Mr. Cowboy are packing. Mr. Pansy and Miss Flibbertigibbet are not ..."
Teachers would be concealed carry IMO.
Ive been volunteering to guard at two schools on my days off this week when school started up.
LOADS of very grateful teachers smiled at this.
The most practical way would be the installation of small locked gun cabinets in strategically located classrooms and offices. Keep a rifle in the locked cabinets and issue a key to approved and trained personnel. The weapons would not be obtrusive or subject to accidental discharge. They would just be another piece of furniture unless and until they were needed as a weapon. After all, these incidents are very rare and we don't need to prepare for a fast draw contest or a daily gunfight at the OK Corral.
The kids will then know where the guns are if there are safes. Then any perspective shooter will know what rooms to go to first. Time is of the essence in an attack. If there are multiple personnel with firearms then there’s the risk of “friendly fire” type incidents. The lib media would have a feeding frenzy over that. Maybe you could put the safes in rooms that have closets and put the safes in the closet. There needs to be procedures in place for on site responders and everyone needs to read and understand them. The people carrying will need good training for crisis situations. I agree we should increase security in schools. Just trying to think through how do we implement so that it works, is safe and cost effective. Hopefully, just the knowledge that a school, a hospital or other venue has armed security may be enough to scare away a nutjob.
“Or maybe have an armed guard and one or two armed teachers (volunteers) as back up?”
That one is probably the best case. My school has a couple of resource officers around all day, but they cannot be everywhere at once. As for arming the teachers, let those inclined to bear arms do so. I’ve got some colleagues who probably shouldn’t, and I’ve got some who would do quite well at it.
Thanks for your reply.
Of course implementation would need to be geared to the needs of the particular school. In 99.99 percent of the cases, the cabinets would never be opened except for inspection and maintenance. We are not talking about defending against a large scale invasion, just, at the most, the remote possibility of a couple of unstable individuals. The reason I suggest rifles is because they are more accurate thus less chance of innocent bystanders being hurt. The reason I suggest having them locked in cabinets rather than carried on the person is for both safety and peace of mind of the parents. Multiple strategically located weapons would increase the odds of some responsible person being able to stop someone like the Newtown nut. As far as children knowing where the guns are located, I would just suggest that you can’t long hide anything from the curious mind of a child.
We don’t need to make the solution bigger than the problem.