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gotgunz
09-18-2007, 11:28 AM
http://news.yahoo.com/s/csm/20070918/ts_csm/aselfdefense


Should teachers be allowed to pack a gun? By Brad Knickerbocker
Tue Sep 18, 4:00 AM ET



In court documents, she's known as "Jane Doe." Innocuous enough, but the woman behind that pseudonym pushes one of the nation's hottest political buttons: guns and school safety.

What Ms. Doe wants to do is take her Glock 9-mm pistol to the high school in Medford, Ore., where she teaches.

She's licensed to carry a concealed weapon and she has what many supporters say is a legitimate reason for being armed: a restraining order against her ex-husband based on threats he's allegedly made against her and her children.

But district policy prohibits anyone except a law-enforcement officer from bringing a weapon onto campus. When word got out that she had a concealed-carry permit, administrators reminded her of that policy. There's the political rub: According to state law, "any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition, is vested solely in the Legislative Assembly."

Backed by gun-rights groups, Doe intends to challenge the school district in state court this week. Meanwhile throughout the country, lawmakers are filing bills that would make it legal for adult school employees to carry firearms, in some cases providing special weapons safety training for those who want to be part of their school's security force in addition to their classroom teaching duties.

Gun-rights groups and school boards around the country are paying close attention to the Oregon case.

"There's a specific state statute that prohibits local governments, including school districts, from passing laws or policies prohibiting people from owning or possessing firearms," says James Leuenberger, the Portland, Ore., lawyer representing the teacher.

"Jane Doe," who agreed to be interviewed by phone on condition of anonymity, says she does not want to be viewed as an "Annie Oakley." Trying to extricate herself from an abusive relationship led her to buy her first gun just a few years ago, she says. Prior to that she had not been an activist in defense of the US Constitution's Second Amendment provision regarding "the right to keep and bear arms."

But as a veteran teacher, she has come to believe strongly that having responsible armed adults on campus could have prevented tragedies such as those at Columbine High School in Colorado, Thurston High School in Oregon, and Virginia Tech University last April.

"I have no doubt at all that any time a criminal has gone into a school intending to commit violence they did so knowing nobody was going to be able to stop them," she says. "We've seen what happens when teachers do nothing or can do nothing, and that's not acceptable to me."

According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, 37 states have laws specifically banning guns at schools. In general, administrators, teachers' organizations, and law-enforcement agencies favor such laws. In the confusion of a school shooting, police officials have said, adding guns to the situation just makes the predicament more dangerous.

The state panel investigating the April 16 shootings by a mentally disturbed student who killed 33 people at Virginia Tech University (the nation's deadliest school shooting) agrees.

"If numerous people had been rushing around with handguns the possibility of accidental or mistaken shootings would have increased significantly," the panel wrote.

But that has not stopped a push by the NRA and other gun advocates to allow guns on school property as a safety measure.

In Michigan last week, 16 state lawmakers sponsored legislation allowing teachers, administrators, and other school employees to carry concealed weapons on school property. Ohio has a similar bill pending.South Carolina, Alabama, and Virginia are among several other states that have considered lifting school campus gun bans this year, according to Stateline.org, which tracks state issues.

Louisiana lawmakers refused to pass a bill that would have outlawed guns in college dormitories, and legislators in Maine similarly killed a bill that would have given colleges the authority to prohibit guns on campuses.

Anthony Stavros, a member of the Nevada State Board of Regents governing higher education and a Las Vegas police captain, has proposed deputizing university employees as reserve officers, trained and qualified to carry weapons. The Iowa Board of Regents is close to allowing campus police to be armed.

But efforts to allow guns in grade schools and high schools tend not to get very far in state legislatures. The South Carolina measure failed. Administrators and the state teachers' union in Michigan have voiced strong opposition to the proposal there.

So far, just one state - Utah - allows concealed weapons on campus. Utah's law applies to public colleges and universities. The University of Utah opposed the 2004 legislation that allows weapons on campus (including those owned by students with concealed carry permits), but lost in the state supreme court.

For high school teacher "Jane Doe," who takes her case to court this week, the issue is very personal.

"I have two children in school," she says, "and I would like to think that if something like that ever happened, there would be somebody there to do the right thing to protect my kids."

Scarecrow Repair
09-18-2007, 11:33 AM
Awesome if she wins. I see this as a fine counterstrike on the Brady Bunch, a nice example of the best defense is a good offense.

tango-52
09-18-2007, 11:42 AM
Interesting story. Unfortunately, the author was incorrect when he stated that only Utah allows CCW on campus. California law also allows CCW on all school grounds, provided you have a CCW license. The local administrators may have a fit if they find out, and if you are an emplyeee or student they will probably fire or expel you. But it is not illegal.

Fjold
09-18-2007, 11:46 AM
Here's the interesting part:

But district policy prohibits anyone except a law-enforcement officer from bringing a weapon onto campus. When word got out that she had a concealed-carry permit, administrators reminded her of that policy. There's the political rub: According to state law, "any element relating to firearms and components thereof, including ammunition, is vested solely in the Legislative Assembly."

metalhead357
09-18-2007, 5:56 PM
As been said many times..

We allow bank guards with guns to protect our money.

Why in the H*** aint we allowing teachers to protect our kids? UNarguably 10000000X more priceless than all our money.........

God I hope she wins.

CCWFacts
09-18-2007, 6:17 PM
Interesting story. Unfortunately, the author was incorrect when he stated that only Utah allows CCW on campus. California law also allows CCW on all school grounds, provided you have a CCW license. The local administrators may have a fit if they find out, and if you are an emplyeee or student they will probably fire or expel you. But it is not illegal.

Yup. That was my thought when I read that. CA law certainly does allow CCW holders to carry on campus, and most other places. If CA and UT allow it I would guess there may be some other states, too.

(And yes, students, faculty and staff are bound by campus policies and could be disciplined by the campus for violating them and probably 99% of campus policies prohibit guns on campus.)

LAK Supply
09-18-2007, 6:20 PM
I know a lady who fought MANY court battles in Utah for this very thing.... she was the push behind their current law allowing authorized persons to carry on school grounds....... several hundred thousand later.

Great gal.... she's also the founder of an pro-gun women's organization out of Utah and one of the people that helped to get the Pink Pistols off the ground. The lady's a firecracker!

tenpercentfirearms
09-19-2007, 5:16 AM
I am mixed on this. I most certainly can legally carry to my job at school every day, but I would get fired if I was caught. So I don't carry to school. If they wouldn't fire me, would I still want to carry to school? I am not sure if I want the extra responsibility around a bunch of idiot kids.

The interesting thing is I have had my students write about this and they are all for it. They state they would feel better knowing I was armed. There were certain teachers they said they wouldn't want to be armed because they were afraid the teacher would shoot them.

I don't know. I am kind of torn. I have a feeling if my district allowed it and I started doing it, I would realize it is no different than carrying everywhere else I go and I would probably get used to it.

tango-52
09-19-2007, 5:30 AM
I am not sure if I want the extra responsibility around a bunch of idiot kids.

When you CCW, don't you always have your weapon on you or within arm's reach? Would this be any different at school? If you are carrying IWB with a tuckable holster, no one should know you are armed. Unless you think the students are going to rush you and take your weapon! In which case, why are you working at that school again? lol I know a number of people that carry IWB for 12 or more hours a day. The trick is finding a comfortable holster and location.

pullnshoot25
09-19-2007, 11:18 AM
Dude... that lady kicks butt.

VegasND
09-19-2007, 3:41 PM
We've had this discussion at my school too. While most teachers I work with are wary of (read that have some fear of) guns, they are usually not rabidly anti-gun. At least one teacher who is retired military is becoming a reserve officer and has made it clear he will be driving his police car and wearing his uniform at times. I have admitted mixed feelings about this. Stupid things happen around kids. But, because we can't have armed police on campus all the time, properly trained and briefed faculty and staff are a viable option.

In reality, school is one of the safest places a child can be. The perception that schools are very dangerous places is wrong. If the adults on campus, who are already fingerprinted, backgrounds checked, and of proven responsibility, can't be trusted to act wisely when armed around students--who can? This discussion is going to be interest if she wins.


I am mixed on this. I most certainly can legally carry to my job at school every day, but I would get fired if I was caught. So I don't carry to school. If they wouldn't fire me, would I still want to carry to school? I am not sure if I want the extra responsibility around a bunch of idiot kids.

The interesting thing is I have had my students write about this and they are all for it. They state they would feel better knowing I was armed. There were certain teachers they said they wouldn't want to be armed because they were afraid the teacher would shoot them.

I don't know. I am kind of torn. I have a feeling if my district allowed it and I started doing it, I would realize it is no different than carrying everywhere else I go and I would probably get used to it.

tenpercentfirearms
09-19-2007, 7:33 PM
When you CCW, don't you always have your weapon on you or within arm's reach? Would this be any different at school? If you are carrying IWB with a tuckable holster, no one should know you are armed. Unless you think the students are going to rush you and take your weapon! In which case, why are you working at that school again? lol I know a number of people that carry IWB for 12 or more hours a day. The trick is finding a comfortable holster and location.

Someone has to work with the bad kids. It is kind of like working in prison. We didn't have any weapons. You just roamed about the facility with the inmates. I am not that worried about a student rushing me if I had a gun, but I would also have to stop carrying Mexican style and be a little better about weapon retention. I do not know if that is something I want to do when my primary job is to teach. This is my presonal feeling and really should not apply towards anyone else. If they made it legal for teachers to do, I would not oppose it in any way, I am just not sure if I would do it.

ccwguy
09-20-2007, 9:13 AM
There are some school officials who carry in this state. I doubt the students are the concern of safety. The concern would be protecting the students, not so much protecting yourself from them. Off body carry is a great option. The school 'resource' officer can only do so much while reading the paper or off campus on a priority call. It took me over 2 hours to contact one (school resource officer)once concerning threats to a neighbors son with a gun just off campus.