As he stood outside in the smothering heat in a small town located on the outskirts of Houston, Texas Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick made a statement that perhaps stunned many after the tragedy unfolded Friday at Santa Fe High School.
“I was there with Ted Cruz and Greg Abbott earlier this evening and there were a lot of student friends in the hospital visiting those who were injured. And they all said ‘we want to arm our teachers.’ The parents all said ‘we want to arm our teachers,’” he stated.
The Lieutenant Governor, who started his career as a radio and television broadcaster, was a Republican member of the Texas Senate for 8 years. He has long been a supporter of the idea of arming teachers in Texas schools. Texas state government already allows teachers to be armed, however the ultimate decision is up to each district’s superintendent, he said.
Patrick said a retired Marine was serving as a substitute teacher when the shooting started. The man barricaded his class inside their room after hearing the gunshots. However, he said such a teacher could have properly engaged the gunman if he were allowed to be armed.
“He may have stopped the shooter,” Patrick said. “The answer is not taking away guns.”
Not only does Patrick have the support of countless students, parents, faculty and staff at Santa Fe High School, his belief to arm teachers is felt by thousands across the country. In fact, the idea of allowing teachers to defend their classrooms by fighting back against an armed assailant is gaining momentum in all 50 states.
Less then three months after the attack at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, the Fannin County school district in northern Georgia unanimously voted to arm teachers with guns who volunteer to carry.
While the idea of teachers being allowed to defend the children in their classrooms will surely upset anti-gun liberals, this school board’s approved proposal clearly states employees must be approved by the Board of Education and the Fannin County Sheriff before being permitted to carry a gun on school campuses. At a minimum, the teachers will be trained on judgment, pistol and long gun shooting.
In other words, the teachers will be more than equipped to defend their classrooms against an active shooter.
The growing support to arm teachers is not limited to just southern states that tend to be more conservative and gun friendly. Madison Junior-Senior High School in Ohio was the scene of a school shooting two years ago. After going through the tragedy, the Madison Local School District unanimously voted to allow teachers to be armed.
As of now, at least 10 states allow staff members to possess or have access to a firearm on school grounds. This is according to an analysis by the Education Commission of the States. More will likely follow as more and more Americans realize that teachers should have the right to fight back in order to save their students from becoming statistics.