Secure Your Perimeter – The recent shooting in Uvalde, TX, is an absolute tragedy and something that should never have happened. Unfortunately, it has been a regular occurrence since I was in school, and Columbine was in the news. This is an act of terrorism, in my opinion, and would fall in some of the recognized definitions as well. Still, unfortunately, I think it will continue to occur due to ineffective laws, restrictions on law-abiding citizens, and the fact that no one is willing to make a change. So why have we not learned? What can we do to help? Here are some thoughts that I encourage you to take to your school boards and insist on these changes to harden our schools.
It is sad, but there are no safe spaces, as I mentioned in my last blog. Schools were once a place that was considered sacred. However, as our kids are something that most Americans consider sacred, they provide a target for those wanting to do harm. Sadly, some wish to make a statement about bad childhoods, bad teachers, classmates, or simply looking to create as much terror as possible now look at these as viable targets in which to act. So why do we not treat our schools any different than other targets that we have hardened in the past?
I was in high school for 9/11, and I remember being on a trip about six months after the fact in an airport. I remember that as so odd I can still tell you every detail. What used to be simple security checking for bombs (a reaction to threats of terror in the 70s/80s), there was now a National Guardsman with a fully loaded M-60 machine gun there, just in case… We secured the cockpits in every single aircraft, allowing for a single door to prevent that. Other restrictions came from taking nail files, water bottles, and shampoo containers, but there have been no successful hijackings of American flights since. So why are we not doing this with schools?
Some suggestions that I would recommend are the following. In any position in the military, you need an established perimeter of good guys that helps keep the bad guys out. If I were in a forward operating base (FOB), There would usually be a single or maybe two entrances to the base. That’s it. Why is this not done in school? If you have an armed individual forced to go in through the entrance, not a side door. The second is a defensive force that can neutralize the threat. Before Columbine, many schools were ok with students and teachers with gun racks in the car, and there were no school resource officers (guards). I am a firm believer that there should be at least one or two individuals who are capable of engaging someone who tries to breach the perimeter. I don’t think metal detectors are a viable option due to kids having a hundred items in their bags (parents back me up here), and if they are emplaced without someone to back them up, the best you get is a few seconds’ warning before the event happens.
I would also contact federal and state representatives about gun-free zones. It should be no shock that schools are a target, both for the value of our youth and that anyone who is carrying now would be breaking the law. Criminals have this nasty problem of breaking the law, hence the name criminal, and I don’t think they see a gun-free zone sign and decide to reconsider. Now you put up armed guard signs and have them actually there…. which is a deterrent. Ask them how restricting legal citizens’ access to firearms will prevent criminals from getting them, like in the case of Buffalo, where the shooter found a way. The Uvalde shooter apparently used a handgun, which is illegal because the minimum age is 21, so how did that prevent anything?
It is time for you to be prepared to defend yourself. It is time to stop letting those with little to no clue about firearms allow our children to be gunned down because it punishes law-abiding citizens. It is time to be that school board that adopts teacher concealed carry. It is time to realize that we as responsible citizens owe it to ourselves, our family and our fellow countrymen to be able to defend ourselves because there are no safe spaces, and we need to quit pretending that infringing on rights will bring about that fallacy.
Author: Ian Bolser