Policy recommendation: The Secretary of Education implement an Executive Order whereby qualified teachers with Gulf War Veteran status are hired above tenured teachers with maximum five veterans hired per school (ie. they may replace tenured teachers in school systems to which they apply). Such teachers are permitted to secure a personally (or National Guard) owned pistol in a desk safe for use during attack.
Discussion: A friend posted an article stating that firing a pistol in a real situation “is not like TV.” I’ve deployed to combat zone twice: first as an unarmed contractor; second as a battalion commander with M4 “assault rifle” and 9mm pistol. I opted to leave my “unarmed” contract after six months, in part due to a preference to face an armed terrorist with some sort of firearm, rather than without.
I didn’t receive a Combat Action Badge (pictured above), although I was probably close enough to exploding ordinance to receive one, and never discharged a firearm in the direction of an armed assailant. That said, I participated in (and ran) innumerable training ranges (including “live fire” tactical exercises) where fire control and avoiding engaging “friendly participants” was integral to success.
Gulf War veterans are trained to handle firearms as a matter of course. While different units provide different levels of weapons training (unsure Airmen or Sailors receive the same level of firearms training as Marines and Army Soldiers), a teacher who was honorably discharged after serving in Afghanistan or Iraq might prefer to have access to a firearm in the classroom, vice without.
Random firing into a crowd of students (aka Callahan in Dirty Harry movies) is a bad idea minus incredible marksmanship skills. I credit a Gulf War vet with the judgment not to do this, and simply suggest an armed teacher pointing a firearm at a kid (all shooters I can think of were untrained and mentally unstable) and commanding him (usually a “him”) to put the gun down, will stop or slow additional shootings.
I will leave the conversation about replacing tenured teachers with qualified Gulf War vets to the education professionals, going so far as to say there are tenured teachers in the system that school leadership might be delighted to have retire or leave, and acknowledging the our population of 7 million Gulf War era vets are frequently un- or under-employed… and not because they aren’t qualified. Let’s get a few of those vets in the classroom!