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NRA Calls for 'Armed Security' Around Schools

'The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun,' the NRA's Wayne LaPierre said.

In an amazing Friday morning press conference in Washington DC, the National Rifle Association broke its weeklong silence following the horrific shooting of 26 people at a school in Newtown, CT and called for a surge of gun-carrying "good guys" around American schools.

NRA Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre called for a new kind of American domestic security revolving around armed civilians, arguing that "the only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun."

"We care about our president, so we protect him with armed Secret Service agents," LaPierre said. "Members of Congress work in offices surrounded by Capitol Police officers. Yet, when it comes to our most beloved, innocent, and vulnerable members of the American family, our children, we as a society leave them every day utterly defenseless, and the monsters and the predators of the world know it, and exploit it."

"I would have to review what evidence he cites to support his position. I have not studied his proposal at this point," O'Toole stated.

LaPierre's speech was a call to supporters to mobilize around a new vision of American domestic security, at a time when voices for gun control are steadily rising. On Friday morning before the press conference, President Obama released a video (above) citing a petition by hundreds of Americans calling for swift action.

Peters Township School District already has a full-time police officer that works at the high school and is available for other district schools when needed.

At the grassroots level, groups like Newtown United, a group of Newtown neighbors, are working to address major issues related to the tragedy, including gun control, violent media, mental health and legislation.

Newtown locals responded to the NRA press conference. Suzy DeYoung, a Newtown resident for nine years who has three children, said LaPierre's speech was playing to people’s fears.

“People are much smarter than this,” DeYoung said. “He is saying we need to be protected from guns by more guns. This lack of logic speaks for itself, and I truly believe the response you are abut to see from parents all around the world will offer better commentary than I ever could."

Joanna Zachos, a mother in Sandy Hook, CT said that while she supports an increase in gun control and personally does not believe in guns at all, that the larger problem goes "way beyond that."

"The problem we have is our immunity to violence as a society as a whole," she said. "Violent video games, violent movies, addiction to horror films. We've developed immunity to violence and violent images."

LaPierre also lamented violence in video games, music videos and "blood-soaked" films. But his central solution seemed to be a great mobilization of gun-carrying "good guys," a term he used repeatedly but did not define, who might be more present and respond more quickly than police.

"If we truly cherish our kids, more than our money, more than our celebrities, more than our sports stadiums, we must give them the greatest level of protection possible," LaPierre said. "And that security is only available with properly trained, armed 'good guys'."

LaPierre, who was interrupted twice by protesters who held signs in front of TV cameras, made a direct call for local action.

"I call on every parent. I call on every teacher. I call on every school administrator, every law enforcement officer in this country, to join with us and help create a national schools shield safety program to protect our children with the only positive line of defense that’s tested and proven to work," he said.

LaPierre did not take questions from reporters, and did not acknowledge the protesters.

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Paul Baxter December 22, 2012 at 01:04 PM
Oh, goodie. I can't wait to transform our schools into the OK Corral.
Joyce Rodgers December 22, 2012 at 02:18 PM
Regardless of your personal views on gun control laws, Mr. LaPierre's idea has a major flaw with providing every public school in America with an armed security officer-where do we get the funding ? One of the first cutbacks since the downturn in the economy has been federal funding of educational programs. Hopefully Americans will show our intelligence and not rush to judgment about a two minute sound byte. First and foremost, the folks guiding any solutions should be the first responders and school officials, the people who will have to implement any type of changes in building procedure and structure. Congress needs to listen to them and not the lobbyists of any group who has "paid their campaign bills". What we all can do in the interim is to comply with any new regulations our local officials deem as essential without complaint--and remember your children came home to you on December 14. Joyce Rodgers, Peters Township educator at Pleasant Valley Elementary School
Roger December 22, 2012 at 03:42 PM
Quoting: " Hopefully Americans will show our intelligence and not rush to judgment about a two minute sound byte. ..." Unfortunately, the second part of your statement is par for the course. We only need to review the political rhetoric of the past week. The shootings in CT were horrific. But, the aftermath in terms of political discussions and national conversation is very disturbing. When has knee-jerk political legislation produced the desired outcome, and when has it produced unintended consequences? Way too often! I remain astounded at the suggestion of having teachers and school administrators armed. This suggestion has so much support on these boards. I know many teachers, and I think most of them would shudder at the thought of having to be armed. This is not what they "signed up for" when deciding to be a public school teacher. The one thing that is certain in the wake of the shooting, and the follow-on political rhetoric, gun sales are soaring. The national conversation about limiting guns always means more guns in the hands of US citizens. Whatever happened to the days a few decades ago, when nearly all kids has guns and holsters, and all the time spent playing "cops and robbers?" And, no shootings in public places either? Many kids had several sets of guns and holsters, an almost certain Christmas gift for many children.

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