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DeWine: Arming educators should be an option

Published: Thu, December 20, 2012 @ 12:09 a.m.

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By Marc Kovac



Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine indicated he is open to local school boards arming trained teachers, principals and staff as a means of responding quickly to shooting incidents.

“If I was on a school board, ... I would seriously consider having someone in that school who may be an ex-police officer, someone who has significant training, who had access to a gun in school,” he said. “But you’d have to be very careful about it. I’m not saying everyone in school should be armed, but someone who knows exactly what they are doing and who has that gun under lock and key but who can get to it instantly out of their office. That’s something that I think I would at least debate and talk about in a school.”

But, he added, “Each school is different. Each school has unique needs. And each school has the culture of that community.”

DeWine made the comments during a Wednesday press conference, where he announced plans to develop training for teachers to respond to shooting incidents, such as the one that occurred in Newtown, Conn., in which more than two dozen people were killed, most of them young children.

Michael Sawyers, acting superintendent for public instruction for the state, said, “Safety is paramount. Parents and guardians have to believe their children will be safety at school. ... Although we can’t prevent everything, as illustrated by Connecticut, it’s our responsibility to do all we can on a daily basis to ensure kids come to school and have a safe, productive learning environment.”

Ohio schools already are required under state law to submit safety plans to the attorney general’s office for use by law enforcement and other emergency responders who are dealing with incidents.

Earlier this summer, DeWine chastised more than 150 schools that had failed to submit plans. He said he expected most to have plans on file in coming weeks.

Of the nearly 4,900 plans the office has in hand, however, most fall short of guidelines released by in recent days by DeWine’s office and a task force that studied the issue, meaning the details are inadequate.

DeWine said his office will be working with schools to improve the plans.

“We cannot, unless we barricade every school in this country, assure that there’s never going to be a problem,” he said. “But what we can do and what is our moral obligation to do as citizens and as elected officials, is to minimize the risk, increase our odds of the kids surviving and decrease the odds of something happening.”


1TB(1167 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

Having guns around children is not minimizing any risk.

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2peggygurney(408 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

The gun(s) wouldn't be around children. He did specify "under lock and key but who can get to it instantly out of their office....".

I am not pro-gun, nor pro-NRA, never have been. BUT if this is what it takes to insure that my child has a safe learning environment, then so be it.

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3uselesseater(229 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

AMEN @theguins!

Guns and children have coexisted forever. Only ignorant irresponsible parents tend to have problems with kids and guns.

Kids in responsible homes are taught not to touch the oven, wood stove, gun, etc. They are given small guns at different stages to train them and teach danger and responsibility.

I know of many districts where police are who lingers in the hallway and they have firearms too. Go to any real city.

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4uselesseater(229 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

"When it was written only white men could vote and people of color were viewed as inferior."

Little do you know fitzkelly, but there were many racist gun laws enacted when slavery became a hot button topic.

One from North Carolina read:

"That if any free negro, mulatto, or free person of color, shall wear or carry about his or her person, or keep in his or her house, any shot gun, musket, rifle, pistol, sword, dagger or bowie-knife, unless he or she shall have obtained a licence therefor from the Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions of his or her county"

There's a good history lesson about such over here:

So, gun restriction if anything has clear roots to racism.

The right to protect oneself is a natural undeniable right, be they white, black, woman, child or anything else.

As far as more guns meaning more crime, that is rubbish, pure fiction. Again, I point you to Kennesaw, Georgia, a growing urban city that mandates adults to own and posses firearms and place where firearms are seen in plain view routinely. Their crime rate is about 126 versus average of 320 nationally.

They also have just a bit more than half the number of officers per capita compared to rest of Georgia. Which really matters since police expenditures often exceed over 50% of a town/city's budget annually.

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5BrothaLove(81 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago


Your comments are just plain silly...

Firstly, countries with strict gun control and reduced violence also tend to be countries with suppressed citizens and virtually no rights... who will step out of line, gun or no gun, in a country where they will lop off your head without trial.

Secondly, taking away guns is a taking away of our liberties. How you do not see that is completely beyond me.

Thirdly, more guns in the hands of the right people has always been the answer. I suggest you look at the town in Georgia where gun ownership is a requirement. They have zero crime.

You must understand that an armed citizenry is what has kept you safe from enemies foreign AND domestic. Please get over this fear of a gun, it is not in your best interest.


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6DeepThoughts(7 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

@FitzKelly - Those statements are not true at all. In fact, just the opposite. The Washington Post published a study two days ago on the correlation of gun violence per 100 citizens and gun ownership per 100 citizens. There is absolutely no correlation whatsoever between gun ownership in gun violence. Some of the highest gun violence countries have the lowest gun ownership. The US is among the highest gun ownership countries, but is in the middle in terms of gun violence.

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7GoPens(397 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

Before I just thought DeWine was stupid. Now I know for sure.

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8uselesseater(229 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

@theoldwrench, what programs? Proper police protection around schools?

Maybe the union bums can do some school detail instead of getting fat sitting in cars.

You'd think it would be their social duty and obligation. Or do we need to negotiate that with their union too?

Schools don't need to be fortresses, but I tell you for a solid decade, most new schools look identical to the prisons being built. Alarmingly similar, minus the razor wire.

I remember when students brought guns to school and we had shooting clubs as extra curricular activity. We didn't have any of these shooting back then, did we?

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9USMC0331(152 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

Hire veterans. Put a pistol on their hip and an m-16 strapped around their shoulder. One in ever school, pay them 50K a year and call it a day. Simple solution to a terrible problem. Malls can do the same. A very small price to pay for a whole lot of protection. Unfortunately we are still building schools and preparing for "fires". whens the last time a school "burnt down"?

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10TB(1167 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

When's the last time any of you were inside a school in Youngstown or warren?

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11papa1(711 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

great idea! after teachers get their degrees we'll send them to boot camp. is parris island still open. they should be able to turn them into killing machines. ridiculous! hire one or two highly trained guards, and that is sad.

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12TB(1167 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

Sadder than someone who shouldn't have access to guns getting them?

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13Bigben(1996 comments)posted 3 years, 7 months ago

First off soldiers do not belong in schools and that is a very slippery slope. Although I do believe that these corporate wars are expensive .Soldiers enforcing domestic law at home smacks too much of police state which is something hopefully we all want to avoid.

However, law enforcement can and should do that and also I am in favor of having an option for some armed staff, especially in schools without police as long as they are properly trained in gun safety. That is probably going to be the best case scenario.

As to the comment "Let us look at the facts. In countries where guns are strictly controlled gun violence is minimized." - - -Ah what about Joseph Stalin's time when millions were shot in the back of the head in slanted floor basements so the blood would drain better. What about Hitler's Nazi Germany ? I think you are mistaken . The founders thought the second amendment was a necessity.

Last to all the folks who think we have taken a wrong turn in our society with violent and graphic videos, games, TV ETC and haven't done enough to publicly and privately teach children to value their lives and the lives of others-I agree.

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