Our hearts go out to the families of those slain in the senseless shooting this morning at Sandyhook Elementary school in Newtown, Connecticut.
At least 27 people, including 18 children, have been killed. Reports indicate that most of the children were of kindergarten age. They never stood a chance once a gunman entered their classrooms and indiscriminately opened fire.
Many of our readers have children, and most of us are engaging in conversations with family and friends about the horrific shootings.
This morning, parents in Newton dropped their kids off at school like any normal day, expecting to see them when the Friday afternoon dismissal bell rang.
We, like most of you, can’t begin to imagine what these parents and relatives of the deceased are going through now.
No sense can be made from a senseless event such as this.
There is nothing that can prevent a psychotic breakdown such as the one the shooter must have experienced prior to entering this school. We will never be able to stop random acts of violence, because they are, in most instances, impossible to predict.
The White House has already issued a statement on the events in Newtown:
“We’re still waiting for more information about the incident in Connecticut,” Carney said when asked about the president’s reaction to it.
Carney called the event “tragic” and said there would be time later for a discussion of policy implications.
Obama remains committed to trying to renew a ban on assault weapons, Carney said.
We will never be able to protect everyone – even if lawful ownership of firearms were to be banned altogether.
Though we can’t prevent someone from going crazy and opening fire on innocents, we may be able to limit the scope and scale of mass shootings.
The solution, though unpopular in many political circles, is to train teachers and administrative staff how to deal with active shooter situations in schools in addition to existing security policies that involve such emergence response plans as sheltering-in-place.
To prepare properly, schools must assume the worst-case scenario in planning their security protocols. They must develop response plans based on the assumption that a crazed gunman is randomly targeting victims with no intention of backing off until he is stopped.
It may be a controversial approach, but had a teacher been trained by local law enforcement rapid response units like SWAT or by Department of Homeland Security on how to disable this shooter, preferably with a licensed firearm, the tragic consequences and number of dead may have been reduced.
We’ve seen it over and over.
Columbine, Colorado: 13 dead, 21 wounded
Virginia Tech: 32 dead, 17 wounded
Aurora, Colorado: 12 Dead, 58 wounded
Newtown, Connecticut: At least 27 dead, including 18 elementary school children
All of the venues where these mass shootings have taken place had published NO GUN policies.
Security protocols that include arming teachers and staff will work.
In December 2007 a gunman entered the New Life mega-church in Colorado Springs killing two and wounding two others. He would have continued on, had he not been stopped by Jeanne Assam, an armed volunteer security officer who stood between the shooter and the rest of the congregation that Sunday morning.
If we had not had an armed person on our campus, 50 to 100 people could have lost their lives yesterday.
Brady Boyd, Pastor of New Life Church
There are an estimated 875 million firearms in the world, 270 million of which are in America.
BANNING GUNS AND RESTRICTING THE PERSONAL POSSESSION AND CARRYING OF FIREARMS WILL NOT WORK.