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Arming (some) school staff? What do you think of this article?


msjones
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I've never paid much attention to the issue of gun control, but obviously the topic is everywhere this week following last week's massacre. CNN posts this article by William Bennett today:

 

http://www.cnn.com/2...html?hpt=hp_bn7

 

I think he makes a lot of sense.

 

Perhaps it's too soon to discuss this... but I wonder what others think.

 

ETA: Please note the word "some" in the topic title. I'm not specifically suggesting (and neither does the article) that every teacher carry a weapon.

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I completely agree and it is because I study the evidence= not just go with my own ideas. I did a master's thesis on violence in a specific situation and found that the determining factor was young and male for whether the person with a particular delusion would turn to violence. I read today about a guy in Germany who attacked an elementary school with a blow torch or some such thing and burned kids to death- better??

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This probably falls under political topis ban.

I think it's crazy to train and arm teachers, but I can understand having a security guard at the door.

 

I had thought the political topic ban was related to the election. Perhaps I misunderstood.

 

I see this as an education-related topic.

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Personally, I think it's WAY above school staff paygrade to not only be trained with guns but somehow keep it out of the hands of unbalanced students (or others for that matter). A trained security guard would be another matter. However, that would just mean more extras would get dropped and education quality would go down even further.

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AMEN!!

Funny, how many of those outspoken proponents of gun control have their own armed security guards.

 

 

So very true!!! That has always been something I've found humorous. From pretty much all of the anti-gun politicians and Hollywoods: "We're going to outlaw guns, and that applies to everyone but my own armed guard!!"

 

I think having, at the very least, armed guards outside of schools is wise. I believe there are some schools who have already begun arming teachers.

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I'm not anti gun in the least (we have many), but I think this is a BAD idea.

I much prefer the idea of paying an unemployed military vet (who has undergone a psych eval) to stand, armed, in front of the school. I'd have no problem with my taxes increasing to help pay for it.

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I think it sad that this is where we are at, but I will take having a few school "marshals" working as teachers, administrators, facility care and room aides, over no armed protection whatsoever. And when I say "marshals" I mean preferably military or police training with the psych evals to justify placing them in these positions. They should have pay that reflects their training. I do not think this should be the only thing we take from this. Better locks on classroom doors and various other measures need to be in place.

 

I WISH this wasn't where we are at as a society, but...well...if wishes were horses and all that. :(

 

I do not believe for a longshot that this is the only discussion we should be having. But, if it were my child being faced with a knife wielding blow torch burning, homemade weapon waving insane person I want to know there are heros equipped with deadly force within the school.

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So very true!!! That has always been something I've found humorous. From pretty much all of the anti-gun politicians and Hollywoods: "We're going to outlaw guns, and that applies to everyone but my own armed guard!!"

 

Hhmmm...odd you claim to have heard that as very, very few gun control advocates support banning all guns. Even fewer politicians hold that position. Would you mind giving some specific examples of those who are wanting to "outlaw guns" except for their own private security?

 

I think having, at the very least, armed guards outside of schools is wise. I believe there are some schools who have already begun arming teachers.

 

 

Don't you find it odd that we are the only western nation (that I know of) that has to resort to posting armed guards outside of schools and/or arming teachers?

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I think we need to quit focusing on guns, pro- or con-, and focus on funding appropriate mental health care in this country.

 

 

i respectfully disagree. Both conversations are needed. One is a defensive approach (armed school officals) the other is offensive (early interventions and prevention mental health care).

 

I think it is wise to have a good offense and defense.

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Next year I will have both dds in public middle school. If they start arming teachers and/or administrators, my kids won't step foot in the building. I saw a few teachers/administrators lose their cool with students in my school days and I hate to think what might have happened had they been armed. Our middle school has one armed officer on the premise at all times and I would be ok with more of them.

 

I'll also say that schools really need to change their lock down procedures. When my dd heard about the shooting she commented how ridiculous their plan is. Her school rooms aren't even actually rooms. They have a door, but the walls that line the hallway can just be pushed out of the way.

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Initially I thought the idea of arming school staff was a terrible one. However, after I heard what they are actually doing in TX, I am at least receptive to the idea. It is not like just giving random first grade teachers a pistol to stick in their desk. They are giving people serious training and they have a plan for when to use the guns. I hate it, but I think this might be necessary to protect our kids.

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Hhmmm...odd you claim to have heard that as very, very few gun control advocates support banning all guns. Even fewer politicians hold that position. Would you mind giving some specific examples of those who are wanting to "outlaw guns" except for their own private security?

 

 

Don't you find it odd that we are the only western nation (that I know of) that has to resort to posting armed guards outside of schools and/or arming teachers?

 

 

On the first point, I'm not going to go hunting stuff down for you, but Rosie O'Donnell was the first to pop into my mind for Hollywood. She made a big to-do about this topic at one point while at the very same time having her own armed guards.

 

 

 

On the second point, no, not really odd considering where we are as a nation right now, but something I expect to continue getting worse. I think it has everything to do with our moral decline and the fact that we are repeatedly turning our backs on God, as a nation. I'm saying this with full knowledge that people will disagree with that viewpoint. God's Word doesn't lead me to believe people will rally around that view. But we are a nation of much bloodshed, as is seen by out treatment of the unborn. I suspect things will get much worse until that situation is dealt with. Until there is revival in this nation and a turning back to Christ, I don't expect things to get any better. All of the issues we are dealing with are just symptoms of the greater problem. It all starts with sin. The remedy is Christ.

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If any of you remember the school shooting in Pearl, MS, in 1997, the assistant principal actually held the gunman at gun point in the parking lot of the school until the police could get there. As the wife of one of those policemen, I was extremely grateful. A lot of people were angry that he held a student at gunpoint, but at that point, he couldn't let him leave. This particular principal was in the army reserves, I believe, so he was well trained in that regard. In most cases, though, it seems as if the damage is done quickly, so an armed teacher would probably not be effective. Better security is the answer, maybe even on the classroom level.

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Absolutely arm our teachers and principals. I think we are crazy not to. Our children deserve to be able to go to safe schools without fear and if that's what it takes...so be it.

 

 

I don't agree.

 

1. We have had numerous threads here over the years about how we (collective "we") have chosen to homeschool because, among other reasons, we feel that there are many kids in public school who are impacted by a variety of issues: behavioral, mental health, etc. What's to stop one from overpowering the teacher and getting control of the gun?

 

2. Where would this gun be kept? Would teachers wear a holster? What about body armor? If you're asking a teacher to arm themselves, shouldn't they at least have the protection that an armed police officer wears when carrying a weapon?

 

3. What if, in the course of a hypothetical firefight with a hypothetical intruder, children are caught in the crossfire? Generally the teacher does not stand right inside the classroom door at all times. Generally the students, desks, tables, bookcases, etc. are between the teacher and the door to the classroom.

 

4. Teachers are now expected to be an educator, parent, morality coach, social worker and nurse to the children in their classrooms. Adding "armed guard," and charging them with the task of using firepower to keep the children safe is certainly a tall order.

 

5. Who bears the liability if the gun is taken by a student, the gun discharges erroneous, or a student is caught in the crossfire while a teacher is shooting at an intruder? The teacher who pulled the trigger? The school district that armed the teacher and directed her to use it?

 

6. IF this is implemented, with whom do we fill the classrooms vacated by teachers who would rather quit their job than carry a loaded weapon? Surely there would be a mass exodus of educators leaving the profession. So who covers the shortages?

 

7. Who pays for the guns, ammunition, training, upkeep and liability policies? Much of the nation is completely overburdened with the cost of education now. Should we eliminate band and choir to pay for handguns and bullets? What kind of a sad statement on education is that?

 

8. What if some parents (like me) balk at the idea of their child sharing space with a gun, a whole bunch of video-game-obsessed teenagers and a quickly trained, nervous teacher? Could parents opt out? Or would parents be forced to send their student into an environment where the atmosphere is so anxious that the teacher has to wear a gun?

 

Those are just a few points dashed off as I race to a meeting----- I'm interested to hear some possible solutions or answers to the questions I've posed.

 

astrid

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I think the places with the fewest incidents of gun violence are going to be the places with the fewest guns. Arming everyone might be necessary in a place where you insist that everyone (sane or not) can have access to very effective killing machines. But I would rather live in a society where it would be very difficult for anyone to have access to high-powered weapons. Then it wouldn't be necessary to arm the good guys as well as the bad.

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Hhmmm...odd you claim to have heard that as very, very few gun control advocates support banning all guns. Even fewer politicians hold that position. Would you mind giving some specific examples of those who are wanting to "outlaw guns" except for their own private security?

 

 

 

Don't you find it odd that we are the only western nation (that I know of) that has to resort to posting armed guards outside of schools and/or arming teachers?

 

 

Sure . . . King, I mean, former Chicago Mayor Daley. And Mayer Emmanuel is following in his footsteps. Gun control is really working for the law abiding citizens of Chicago.

 

Israel encourages armed teachers since the Ma'alot school massacre in 1974. Of course, in Isreal, men and women do mandatory service.

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I've never paid much attention to the issue of gun control, but obviously the topic is everywhere this week following last week's massacre. CNN posts this article by William Bennett today:

 

http://www.cnn.com/2...html?hpt=hp_bn7

 

I think he makes a lot of sense.

 

Perhaps it's too soon to discuss this... but I wonder what others think.

 

 

The facts are startling

'But let's take the issue one step further and examine places where all guns, regardless of make or type, are outlawed: gun-free zones. Are gun-free zones truly safe from guns?

John Lott, economist and gun-rights advocate, has extensively studied mass shootings and reports that, with just one exception, the attack on U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Arizona, in 2011, every public shooting since 1950 in the U.S. in which more than three people have been killed has taken place where citizens are not allowed to carry guns. The massacres at Sandy Hook Elementary, Columbine, Virginia Tech and the Century 16 movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, all took place in gun-free zones.'

 

It is amazing that the facts support the truth that less guns = more violence while the press and many politicians want to to hold onto the illusion that more guns = more violence.

 

This concept has me very concerned { Perhaps "gun-free zones" would be better named "defenseless victim zones."} That seems to be the more accurate term

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Ali,. you might think that gun free zones are safe, but they are not. You need to read the empirical evidence, not rely on what you think is logical. I mean if we didn't know about gravity and didn't perform any experiments, we might think it is logical that a heavier object falls faster than a light one, We would be wrong.

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If any of you remember the school shooting in Pearl, MS, in 1997, the assistant principal actually held the gunman at gun point in the parking lot of the school until the police could get there. As the wife of one of those policemen, I was extremely grateful. A lot of people were angry that he held a student at gunpoint, but at that point, he couldn't let him leave. This particular principal was in the army reserves, I believe, so he was well trained in that regard. In most cases, though, it seems as if the damage is done quickly, so an armed teacher would probably not be effective. Better security is the answer, maybe even on the classroom level.

 

 

Although it is very true that these things happen fast and if a shooter were to find an unarmed class little could be done. The element of not knowing who in the school is armed would be a deterrent. Right now, they are defenseless if you make it past the front office and perpetrators know this.

 

I am not sure if the air marshals have been around long enough for us to have solid statistics on their effectiveness as a deterrence but I would surmise that they do act as one on some level. Make sense?

 

Edited to add: I do not believe teachers should be allowed to carry firearms carte blanche. Way to many risks with potential mental and emotional disorders.

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We need to look at all parts of the equation, which includes mental health care AND guns.

 

 

I don't disagree that guns are part of the equation (and for the record, I'm in favor of the right to bear arms). However, as its been pointed out many times in these discussions over the last several days, there have been similar deadly events that *didn't* involve guns at all.

 

I just don't think arming school staff is the answer here. Astrid put it so well, I'll just say "Yeah, what she said" :).

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Ali,. you might think that gun free zones are safe, but they are not. You need to read the empirical evidence, not rely on what you think is logical. I mean if we didn't know about gravity and didn't perform any experiments, we might think it is logical that a heavier object falls faster than a light one, We would be wrong.

 

 

:iagree:Ali many make the same assumption. Do not just assume this to be true...check out the facts....the facts say violence rises when guns are taken out of the hands of citizens....then only criminals have them...what do they have to fear?

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Ali,. you might think that gun free zones are safe, but they are not. You need to read the empirical evidence, not rely on what you think is logical. I mean if we didn't know about gravity and didn't perform any experiments, we might think it is logical that a heavier object falls faster than a light one, We would be wrong.

 

 

I was thinking of Heather's description of life in Malaysia and the peace she has knowing that there aren't guns everywhere. Others have posted about other countries that have put limits in place and the result has been a lot less gun violence. I don't mean that you can't have guns at school, but you allow anyone to purchase any kind of gun that they want and you then trust them to not bring them into your gun-free zone. I would like a society where guns aren't around.

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Absolutely arm our teachers and principals. I think we are crazy not to. Our children deserve to be able to go to safe schools without fear and if that's what it takes...so be it.

 

So you suggest teachers should walk around schools with loaded guns? Because unless you have a gun on you and it's loaded (as opposed to stored in a safe place), it isn't going to do you much good if somebody jumps into the classroom and starts shooting. I wouldn't want to wake up in a world where teachers walk around with loaded guns and I certianly won't send my kid to school that allows this.

I too would like a society where guns aren't around.

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On the second point, no, not really odd considering where we are as a nation right now, but something I expect to continue getting worse. I think it has everything to do with our moral decline and the fact that we are repeatedly turning our backs on God, as a nation. I'm saying this with full knowledge that people will disagree with that viewpoint. God's Word doesn't lead me to believe people will rally around that view. But we are a nation of much bloodshed, as is seen by out treatment of the unborn. I suspect things will get much worse until that situation is dealt with. Until there is revival in this nation and a turning back to Christ, I don't expect things to get any better. All of the issues we are dealing with are just symptoms of the greater problem. It all starts with sin. The remedy is Christ.

 

So you believe the other western countries (which as I noted don't need armed guards and teachers in schools), which tend to be less religious than the US and have easier access to abortion, are somehow closer to Christ than the US? Interesting.

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Whether schools are protected by gun or not, I don't want the teachers burdened with that responsibility. I am appalled that we are considering adding to teachers' burdens in that way. To me, they are among the innocent sheep in these scenarios, not the gatekeepers. I want them in a maternal-paternal/teacher mode so that they will be effective at their job, which is to teach and tend children. I don't want them thinking like combat soldiers while reading nursery rhymes to preschoolers, for example. I want students AND teachers protected from the outside (by whatever means), so inside they can create the learning environment that is needed.

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I think that *if* schools need armed guards, then trained armed guards should be hired. Expecting educational professionals to double-task is unreasonable in my opinion. An armed guard is security minded and security focused at all times -- and that vigilance is an important part of the protection they provide.

 

In my opinion, it would probably be best to begin with point-of-entry control measures (like beep-cards) to control and monitor who is on site -- which seems like the primary concern. Other measures like alarm buttons or a safety system that would detect audible gun shots might be helpful too.

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The facts are startling

'But let's take the issue one step further and examine places where all guns, regardless of make or type, are outlawed: gun-free zones. Are gun-free zones truly safe from guns?

John Lott, economist and gun-rights advocate, has extensively studied mass shootings and reports that, with just one exception, the attack on U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords in Tucson, Arizona, in 2011, every public shooting since 1950 in the U.S. in which more than three people have been killed has taken place where citizens are not allowed to carry guns. The massacres at Sandy Hook Elementary, Columbine, Virginia Tech and the Century 16 movie theater in Aurora, Colorado, all took place in gun-free zones.'

 

It is amazing that the facts support the truth that less guns = more violence while the press and many politicians want to to hold onto the illusion that more guns = more violence.

Another article supports these findings.

"It has now been 12 months since gun owners in Australia were forced by a new law to surrender 640,381 personal firearms to be destroyed by our own government, a program costing Australia taxpayers more than $500 million dollars.

"The first year results are now in:

Australia-wide, homicides are up 6.2 percent,

Australia-wide, assaults are up 9.6 percent;

Australia-wide, armed robberies are up 44 percent (yes, 44 percent)!

In the state of Victoria alone, homicides with firearms are now up 300 percent. (Note that while the law-abiding citizens turned them in, the criminals did not and criminals still possess their guns!)

While figures over the previous 25 years showed a steady decrease in armed robbery with firearms, this has changed drastically upward in the past 12 months, since the criminals now are guaranteed that their prey is unarmed."

 

This concept has me very concerned { Perhaps "gun-free zones" would be better named "defenseless victim zones."} That seems to be the more accurate term

 

Could you please cite your source for the Australian statistics.

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Whether schools are protected by gun or not, I don't want the teachers burdened with that responsibility. I am appalled that we are considering adding to teachers' burdens in that way. To me, they are among the innocent sheep in these scenarios, not the gatekeepers. I want them in a maternal-paternal/teacher mode so that they will be effective at their job, which is to teach and tend children. I don't want them thinking like combat soldiers while reading nursery rhymes to preschoolers, for example. I want students AND teachers protected from the outside (by whatever means), so inside they can create the learning environment that is needed.

 

 

I would like this for them as well, but I just am not sure if it possible. :( (and that is truly heartbreaking) I do think that since there are far more than just "teachers" on staff at schools, most teacher would not be in the position of having to do this. I think there also needs to be a frank discussion with teachers on whether they want the option. What would it take for them to be certified to bear arms on school grounds? They need to feel safe and sometimes that only comes from knowing you have a chance to protect yourself and those in your care.

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I think that *if* schools need armed guards, then trained armed guards should be hired. Expecting educational professionals to double-task is unreasonable in my opinion.

 

4. Teachers are now expected to be an educator, parent, morality coach, social worker and nurse to the children in their classrooms. Adding "armed guard," and charging them with the task of using firepower to keep the children safe is certainly a tall order.

 

I agree strongly with these points.

 

 

( :blushing: Aww...my first successful multiquote effort! I feel so proud...)

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I don't want teachers packing. That is NOT their job.

 

I don't know enough about the assault weapons bills/lack of to have an opinion. I am sick of shootings.

 

I know a lot of people who are responsible gun owners. The police I know wished MORE people carried.

 

I know for a fact that the mentally ill need more help than they are currently getting.

 

(from the article linked, I am Adam Lanza's Psychiatrist)

 

 

 

 

The only move left is for me to ask for help. And that’s exactly what I am doing.

 

1) The US Congress: Please create better laws to ensure the ticking time bomb is caught before it is too late. Make it much easier for a family to get a potentially dangerous person into mandated treatment. This means less paperwork, too. We need to support parents and mental health professionals.

 

2) The US Justice Department: It’s time we enacted a Health Law Court. Have doctors serve as judges and streamline legal proceedings for tough medical and psychiatric cases. Go to commongood.org for ideas on how this can be done.

 

3) Health Insurance Companies: Man up. My main complaint is with you. You make it so hard to keep people in the hospital when they need to be there, and it’s even harder to keep them in intensive outpatient services. Please create protocols for difficult cases and loosen the purse strings for extremely troubled individuals –- before it’s too late.

 

4) Network TV: Please create some exciting television that is actually educational about mental illness. Or least give us a “Gossip Girl†who takes her medication and sees her psychiatrist regularly. Less stigma, better health.

 

5) Drug Companies: You are always trying to ply me with coffee and doughnuts. I have trust issues with you. Don’t want anything, thanks.

 

6) The Hollywood PR Machine: Please find the mental health community a really attractive celebrity to get the US mental health system some money. I am glad that George Clooney and Angelina Jolie are doing so much for Africa, but can we borrow one of them please?

 

7) High School Students: Tell the popular kids to stop being such dicks to the odd kids or the ones they don’t understand.

 

8) Community Psychiatry Health Researchers: You have kick-ass and innovative ideas for how to reform the system. Could one of you put on a sequin dress and walk a red carpet please? We need to get you more money.

 

Me? I will keep trying to do my job. But I want to be better equipped the next time the risk appears before me. Because these young men need help. We all do.

 

 

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I also wonder how many teachers could actually do it? I remember wanting a gun when I lived in my first apartment because it was all I could afford, in a really bad part of town, and my neighbors scared me. My dad told me no. I was floored because I grew up with guns. He said he knew I could never shoot to kill and that having a gun would only end up hurting me because the other person would probably use it on me. I now know he was right and there is no way I would ever want a gun. Dh was in the military and is comfortable with guns so he can get one if he wishes, but he hasn't. Many of these kids by middle school are bigger than the teachers (my 7th grader is taller than all but one of her teachers), and I just think having teachers armed is asking for trouble.

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So you believe the other western countries (which as I noted don't need armed guards and teachers in schools), which tend to be less religious than the US and have easier access to abortion, are somehow closer to Christ than the US? Interesting.

 

 

 

I know how you operate, so I really don't feel like playing your games. I said all that I needed to say. Twist it in whatever way you feel suits you.

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I've been out of the school system for so long, I don't really know what they are dealing with, but, would the kids feel safer if they had security all over?

 

I mean, that might not only help a person intent on killing them, but would it also help the gang activities/crimes/drugs?Or do they have that already, and if so, does it work?

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I think it's a great idea to hire vets to be standing armed guards (after passing mental evals). My dh's uncle is a school cop and he makes over $100,000 per year.

 

I will be totally happy to stop talking about the evidence for why assualt gun bans don't work, etc, as long as the people who want to ban guns also shut up.

 

Nobody is talking about banning guns. That is what bothers me about trying to discuss this rationally. It is not all or nothing.

 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/12/16/opinion/sunday/kristof-do-we-have-the-courage-to-stop-this.html?src=me&ref=general&_r=0

 

"So let’s treat firearms rationally as the center of a public health crisis that claims one life every 20 minutes. The United States realistically isn’t going to ban guns, but we can take steps to reduce the carnage."

 

An idea:

 

"So what can we do? A starting point would be to limit gun purchases to one a month, to curb gun traffickers. Likewise, we should restrict the sale of high-capacity magazines so that a shooter can’t kill as many people without reloading."

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