NRA: Put "Armed Security" Around Schools

"The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun," the NRA's Wayne LaPierre said.

In an amazing Friday morning press conference, the National Rifle Association broke its weeklong silence following the horrific shooting of 26 people at a school in Newtown, Conn. and called for a surge of gun-carrying "good guys" around American schools.

NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre called for a new kind of American domestic security revolving around armed civilians, arguing that "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun."

"We care about our president, so we protect him with armed Secret Service agents," LaPierre said. "Members of Congress work in offices surrounded by Capitol Police officers. Yet, when it comes to our most beloved, innocent, and vulnerable members of the American family, our children, we as a society leave them every day utterly defenseless, and the monsters and the predators of the world know it, and exploit it."

LaPierre's speech was a call to supporters to mobilize around a new vision of American domestic security, at a time when voices for gun control are steadily rising.

On Friday morning before the press conference, President Obama released a video (above) citing a petition by hundreds of Americans calling for swift action.

At the grassroots level, groups like Newtown United, a group of Newtown neighbors, are working to address major issues related to the tragedy, including gun control, violent media, mental health and legislation.

In stark contrast, LaPierre called for a great mobilization of gun-carrying "good guys," a term he used repeatedly but did not define, who could be more present and respond more quickly than police.

"If we truly cherish our kids, more than our money, more than our celebrities, more than our sports stadiums, we must give them the greatest level of protection possible," LaPierre said. "And that security is only available with properly trained, armed 'good guys'."

LaPierre, who was interrupted twice by protesters who held signs in front of TV cameras, made a direct call for local action.

"I call on every parent. I call on every teacher. I call on every school administrator, every law enforcement officer in this country, to join with us and help create a national schools shield safety program to protect our children with the only positive line of defense that’s tested and proven to work," he said.

In his speech, LaPierre also accused the media of selling "violence against its own people" through violent video games, music videos and "blood-soaked" films. He did not take questions from reporters, and did not acknowledge the protesters.

Gretchen Robinson December 22, 2012 at 11:25 PM
Great idea. Where there's a will, there's a way. the NRA, gun manufacturers, and the gun lobby, council passivity. But the nation will not be passive, not this time. The NRA has a small constituency compared with orgs like AARP. But their bullying tactic and the addictive relationship guys have with their guns creates a huge hostile band. But many, many NRA members differ with many NRA actions and positions. Their membership is restive.
Gretchen Robinson December 22, 2012 at 11:32 PM
Indiana: I'm not attacking. I'm trying to challenge. There's a difference.
deb of see-attleboro December 22, 2012 at 11:39 PM
Gretchen: With all due respect, I believe you are trying to challenge. I have serious doubts as to whether you are succeeding.
Gretchen Robinson December 22, 2012 at 11:51 PM
not with some, naming no names, but there is less name calling and some good discussion.
Shane Halajko December 23, 2012 at 12:04 AM
While I applaud the Seekonk School Department for their current actions that they took regarding the horrific shootings that took place at Sandy Hook, I do believe that immediate action needs to take place right now. As a parent, I would feel more comfortable if we had police presence at all of our schools at the beginning and the end of the school day. I know this is only a temporary solution but it's worth implementing until a more viable solution can be determined.
Todd Ouellet December 23, 2012 at 12:34 AM
Shane you are on the right track, Only the coverage needs to be during all operating hours. I am sure seekonk can find the funds. Like the money we found to seed that rezoned property on rte 44 for Habitat for Humanity. Come on selectman! Do someyhing right for once! And I do mean accomplish something, Not Discuss it, table it, then review the minutes at the next meeting!
Local PR December 23, 2012 at 01:04 AM
We need a teacher in every gun store more than we need a cop at every school....
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 01:19 AM
"It'll be a sad day for this country if children can safely attend their classes only under the protection of armed guards." -- Dwight David Eisenhower regarding occurrences at Central High School in Little Rock, Sept. 23, 1957
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 01:21 AM
You know this is a bandaid solution, right? Temporary. Local. Then what??
Todd Ouellet December 23, 2012 at 01:31 AM
Tell that to the families in CT. What do you think they would say if they could go back and have had that security in place. It's the world we live in. Wake up! Nobody could have imagined 911. Do you think this going to get better. And by the way . What is your suggestion MR. TRW hiding behind your keyboard?
Todd Ouellet December 23, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Gretchen, it is a sad day. And a temporary patch in a sinking ship can save a lot of lives til we get home to port!
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 02:12 AM
my point is that local, state, and national efforts are necessary. I just don't want our children to grow up feeling like they are in a prison. Or like hot house flowers scared of coming out from the protection of the NRA, government para-military forces. Where will they learn the freedom of spirit of feeling safe and secure in the woods, on the sidewalk, riding their bikes, etc. if we have to hover. That's not an enviable childhood. Yes, think short term and then, together as a nation, we can figure it out. Here's an analogy I like. "Following the example set by the NRA, Alcoholics Anonymous will now suggest more whiskey to cure alcoholism..."
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 02:19 AM
Actually, Todd, people were warning that the mainland USA might be targetted for a terrorist attack. I remember this. People in Europe had experienced terrorist attacks and warned us that it was likely we might be next. But we have this sense of invincibility....like 'no one would attack US!" And we later learned there was a lot of electronic communications going back and forth between the Middle East and the USA. The CIA (I think) and other agencies monitored it but lacked enough Arabic speaking translators to do the job right. And why were there not enough translators. Many were fired by the military for being gay. This is from memory but I'm sure it's written down.
Todd Ouellet December 23, 2012 at 02:39 AM
Yes and as prohibition taught us it only makes the product available to the criminals. Thats not my point now. Do you feel safe becasue we have law enforcement. If yes then they need to be up front right now. Although the police are responders. They can only get there to clean up the mess. But if we put them in front of the children we have a better chance to protect them!
Todd Ouellet December 23, 2012 at 02:45 AM
Yes we were warned. But nobody could every imagine it happening. Just as all these tragedies. I here the statement " that doesnt happen around here..." much too often. We need to take an offense. The pacifist approach is not working. And yes. I am an NRA supporter. But that is not the issue here. The worst school trajedy in the US was done by a maniac with dynamite. Research it yourself. 1927. Bath Michigan. The rule here is bad guys don't obey laws!!!!!
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 02:48 AM
but not as a permanent solution!
Todd Ouellet December 23, 2012 at 02:49 AM
Lets agree on one thing. We want to proteect the children. Al I am getting is people telling me my beliefs are not good. But no one has suggested a better option. Please do.Some give me a better plan.
Todd Ouellet December 23, 2012 at 03:07 AM
Ok. So whats let us get started on a long term plan. Anyone please chime in. I will have a blog up and running in about a week.( whatiswrong.us) is the site . its not a place to just vent but hopefully a place to address issues and come together to find solutions.
Local PR December 23, 2012 at 04:01 AM
Todd, I appreciate your passion, but there was an armed guard on duty at Columbine. This Landa wackjob was wearing a full suit of body armor and carrying one of the most lethal hand-held weapons known to man. Chuck Norris would've likely offered little resistance. And let's not talk about the armed security guards working at malls who are ineffective in stopping the shootings there. Think an armed guard would've stopped the Batman theater shootings? Even when armed guards are around, they are a very expensive and very ineffective asset. My earlier comment is my solution - train and license the heck out of gun owners. I have to get a CDL license to drive a semi, because they are dangerous on the roads. Yet all I need to do is prove I"m not a felon to purchase an AR 15 and enough ammo to wipe out 100's of people. It's insane how easy it is to obtain these combat-worthy weapons. We don't let people have grenades, tanks, nuclear weapons, or apache helicopters. We should include high-capicity weapons in that group, unless the owner has passed numerous licensing tests and renewals.
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 04:52 AM
Todd: I don't believe that I was 'telling" your "beliefs are not good." I was asking people to rethink their presumptions and views: on gun ownership, the NRA, and things like the gun lobby's great power in Congress. Yes, I do think we want to protect the children in the US. I want to protect the children of the world but that may sound immodest, so I will say as a mother and grandmother, I feel a responsibility to care about children worldwide, whether they die from bullets or starvation. I am glad you are starting a blog. That sounds like a good next step. And I hope you limit those would just vent. We need wide ranging discussions and the asking of the hard questions. But finally, it's not up to anyone here to give you answers. You have to find your own and use your human decency and integrity to discern what is truest - what is right-- for your understanding. And this is a process. I think sites like PATCH work best when people do what's called a 'caring confrontation' of each others blind spots and closely held preconceived ideas. That's hard to do without some trust-building before hand. It is true that I need to have more patience with people, as Indiana would probably agree. But such a forum as this is new. We never actually meet one another. Sometimes I have to forgive myself and others for being where we are, for making mistakes in how we say things, for getting irritated with others. And then, if we stick with it, to begin again.
paul December 23, 2012 at 11:36 AM
I do not trust armed guards in schools. What if the cop or security guard is having a bad day or is mentally unstable, or on drugs? How would any of you feel if a child was shot by accident? Cops shoot people by mistake all the time, it happens. It's a catch 22, don't think by putting cops in the schools that your kids are more safe, it could be the other way around.
deb of see-attleboro December 23, 2012 at 01:31 PM
This whole notion that putting an armed police presence in schools is going to turn them into a prison is ludicrous. Government schools have been a virtual prison for as long as I can remember. I am pretty sure they were structurally designed to keep kids in. In fact, I even remember back in the ninety's when the principal (Goyette, I think) demanded a gate be installed so kids who drove could not go AWOL. So where do we go from here? I have no idea. I think one security person with technological resources (cameras, monitors) might be part of the equation.
Emcee of Seekonk December 23, 2012 at 01:57 PM
So... because we can't cover every eventuality (people having bad days, drugs, NRA sleeping with the GOP, dysfunctional families, etc.) let's just do nothing. And that's what will come of this... nothing, or maybe enact another weak law on clips or fire power that some deranged person will know nothing of or care about. It will be business as usual.
Daniel F. Devine December 23, 2012 at 02:46 PM
paul December 23, 2012 at 03:06 PM
We could have drones watch our schools like we do in the Middle East. Drones don't kill children, the United Nations does.
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 07:38 PM
that was not my experience but I take your point. For me the problem is the 'surveillance society' where you're always being, watched, judged, assessed. It smacks of the totalitarian. Plus, it destroys a sense of a child's personal freedom and hinders kids from developing a sense of individuality. I would add that throughout human history, our young have spent most of their waking hours outdoors and nature was their school and text, including human nature. (Thoreau makes some trenchant comments about the closed minds of those who dwell in town). What I really logged on for was to connect you with the Grafton Patch's postings. A wide ranging discussion which, if you have time or interest, might be useful. I'm not sure how I got onto it. http://grafton.patch.com//articles/is-time-now-for-gun-control
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 08:14 PM
I agree Paul. And I think the idea of arming teachers is absurd, clutching at straws.
Gretchen Robinson December 23, 2012 at 08:31 PM
Paul, drones attacks are vetted by President Obama and many, many liberals, like me, are against them on several grounds. The most important one is the loss of innocent life. I get a magazine called "In these times" (Liberal, of course) http://www.inthesetimes.com/ One of their lead articles for January is "Executioner-in-Chief: Drone attacks and the pathology of presidential power" by Elizabeth Sanders. "The American presidency is, I have come to believe, a pathological institution that turns good men into killers without reflection of remorse." That would apply to both Obama and Bush II, and other presidents, too. Truman giving the okay to drop the atom bomb on Japan--twice. All have blood on their hands. This kind of power in one man's hands was not what the nation's founders intended to happen. They set up a series of power sharing entities in government to prevent just what we have now. These have been dismantled by what Eisenhower warned of, at the end of his presidency, the military-industrial complex. Now the military-industrial-technilogical complex by some. It has taken on a life of its own and spends trillions on security with no financial oversight. Again, both parties are fostering this so this is not a partisan issue. However, I am hugely disappointed with Obama and the moral compass I thought he had. Just shows you the power of these hidden entities, that Eisenhower, too, came up against.
Avon Barksdale December 23, 2012 at 10:27 PM
To be fair, this may be the most inelligent comment Indiana has ever posted.
Indiana December 24, 2012 at 02:46 PM
Good one Avon - How it must be great to be the Rachel Maddow of MA...with no solutions for your "make believe land"


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