Conversations held about having teachers with loaded weapons
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WICS) —
After the latest school shooting in Florida, the question of 'could anything have been done?' has been brought up to many.
"I mean, you've got to have something to protect yourself if a guy comes after you with a gun, you've got to have something to protect yourself," said Owner of Aim to Shoot Doug Schmidgall who is for teachers having weapons in the classroom.
Meanwhile, some believe that there is no room for weapons, loaded or not, on any campus.
"What we need to do is keep that access away from folks and they shouldn't be brought into the schools in the first place," Campaign Director for Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence Mark Walsh who is against teachers having weapons in the classroom said.
Leading some to wonder if teachers were armed with loaded weapons, with the sole intent to protect their students, would it lead to more lives being saved?
"Survivors, whether it be from Northern Illinois University, Virginia Tech, those students that were in the classroom never say, ‘what we needed in that classroom was one more firearm,’" Walsh said.
"It could provide benefits, yes, you need to be checked out, background checked, everything, and maybe even a couple of steps beyond," Schmidgall said.
While some argue it would make a difference to have armed teachers in classrooms to help protect their students against potential violence.
"Taking the guns away from the people will not do anything," Walsh said.
Others have said it would only lead to more confusion and chaos in a potentially dangerous situation.
"The same reaction was, if I had pulled out my gun, I would have been a target," Schmidgall said.
Everyone agrees the safety of students and faculty is the ultimate priority.
"Would you rather have someone in front of them protecting them or nobody standing in front of them protecting them," Schmidgall said.
"I think if there's security in the building and the administration chooses for them to be armed, that's one thing," Walsh said.
Illinois is currently a concealed carry state, which does not allow for any loaded weapon to be anywhere on any campus.
The nine states that allow teachers to have a weapon on campus are Idaho, Utah, Colorado, Oregon, Kansas, Arkansas, Wisconsin, Mississippi, and Texas.
While these nine states allow for teachers to have guns on campuses, 21 other states allow for the schools to make their own decision to allow or deny people to have loaded weapons on a campus. In addition, nine states only allow for concealed guns to be kept in locked cars in parking lots.
If you believe there is something to be concerned about when it comes to a student or a school situation, call the school violence tipline at 1-800-477-0024.