WASHINGTON – In the wake of attempts in several states, including New York, Illinois and Maryland, to curb the Second Amendment, as well as President Obama’s executive orders announced today, Virginia has a plan to reduce the problem of guns in schools.
The plan would hike the level of safety in schools by having teachers and school staff members carry pistols.
The bill, HB 1557, introduced by Republican Delegate Bob Marshall, says the Commonwealth is to establish “training for persons designated to carry concealed handguns on school property.”
Marshall told WND the reason he introduced the bill was because he “was shocked at the collection of murders up there (in Newtown).”
“But what was more disturbing was that the state law of Connecticut turns people into helpless victims,” he said. “This is inexcusable.”
He also noted Aurora, Colo., theater shooting suspect James Holmes had surveyed a number of theaters in the area.
“He chose the only theater with signs that posted weapons prohibited,” Marshall said.
Marshall, a supporter of and an endorsed candidate of the National Rifle Association, says he is not opposed to armed guards in schools but is is concerned about the cost.
He said a state trooper who told him the cost for one armed police officer to guard a school per year is $100,000.
Training volunteers is more feasible, he believes.
“If you simply give the same training to a volunteer, they can be an employee of the school division, they can act in the role of a policeman, without busting the bank.”
He said “the usual suspects” will oppose his idea.
“The heads to the teachers union are against it, but I have many individual teachers who are for it,” he said.
“Liberals think that guns represent something inherently evil,” he said, adding that he is amazed by the “liberal elites” who want to disarm the general populace yet have armed guards for their own children.
He said that there are those who “don’t want the same type of security for other people’s children.”
Gun Owners of America also supports the bill.
“The Marshall bill is a step in the right direction toward ensuring that the Adam Lanzas of the world cannot burst into a Virginia school, armed with the certainty that they will not meet with resistance,” the group said.
The bill is in committee and will be debated in the Militia, Police and Public Safety Subcommittee this week in Richmond.
Marshall is not the first state representative to push for arming schools. Alabama, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Idaho, Iowa, Kentucky, Massachusetts, Mississippi, Montana, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Oregon, Texas, Rhode Island, Utah and Wyoming, in some fashion, do not prohibit the carrying of weapons on high school campuses.
Many states allow school officials to carry weapons with the approval of the school board.
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