Lawmakers propose bill to arm teachers in classrooms
NORTH BAY VILLAGE, Fla. (WSVN) -- A proposed new bill from state lawmakers to arm teachers in their classrooms is causing controversy.
After the Sandy Hook shooting, lawmakers around the nation have been searching for answers to keep that from happening again.
The lone gunman, who killed 20 children and six adults in Newtown, Connecticut three months ago, has Florida lawmakers demanding change. "If someone, a madman, were to walk on a campus where my children were, I hope there would be someone there to stop that man from murdering my children and to take him out before he could do that," said Lake City Representative Elizabeth Porter (R.).
A Florida house panel has said approved a measure that could make that happen, by allowing someone on Florida school grounds to carry a weapon.
Here's how it would work:
- The law would give principals the power to choose an employee, such as a teacher, to be armed or hire an armed safety officer.
- The gun must remain on a person's body.
- That person must have extensive training.
- The person must have a concealed weapons permit.
Parents have mixed reactions about the proposed bill. "It's extremely sad. It's extremely disgusting to think that's the measures we have to go through," said Jaki Maurey-Delavnay.
Others think the bill is a good idea to protect the students. "I like it, I have grandchildren in school. That's perfect," said grandmother Minerette Bent.
Ponte Vedra Beach representative Ronald Renuart (R.) said, "These are the same parents who take their children to banks, to shopping malls, to other places where there are people who are less trained and less screened to carry that weapon."
Representative Richard Stark (D.) gave his opinion over the phone to 7News. "I don't see we need this in Dade or Broward County, but I can see in rural districts. When they call 911, they don't have someone there in two minutes like we do. It can take some time, and that's basically who the bill was for."
Student Alexis Brown said she is afraid about the idea of teachers having guns. "I'm afraid she might shoot the gun by accident and hit someone," said Brown.
"Consider this, you bring more guns in schools, what are you telling the students?" said student Annie Thomas.
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