Should we give children guns to protect them from school violence? page 2

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Originally posted by ImplosionOfDoom:

“Isn’t NCLB a wonderful initiative we can thank the previous administraton for? (sarcasm, in case you’re unaware)”

Actually the reason public school is obligated to educate mentally ill / mentally disabled kids probably falls under the Americans with Disabilities Act or something similar, NCLB is relatively recent and public schools have been obligated to teach the mentally ill / disabled since long before NCLB was enacted.

Again, depends on the nature of the disability. A person with spina bifida cannot walk (or walks with extreme difficulty) but there’s nothing wrong with their mind, so why not teach them? A person with cerebral palsey has a badly malformed cerebellum, but it doesn’t affect their conscious mind at all, so why not teach them? I’m curious as to where your aversion to teaching the physically disabled is coming from.

As to mental issues, again it depends on the nature of the mental disability. A child with depression is no less able than a child without. A child with dyslexia is going to struggle with words, but their intellect is usually above average because of the nature of the disability. Tourette’s syndrome isn’t going to affect the child’s mental capabilities. I could go on for a while here…

In regards to the NRA throwing a fit over having a registry of those qualified to own fire arms, we could simply make a "no fly list’ of people who aren’t allowed to own fire arms so dealers know who they shouldn’t sell to. (Come to think of it that might actually be easier, since violent mental illnesses are fairly uncommon)

That would probably be a good way to handle it, yes. They do something similar in the country where I currently work (UK). If medical problem crops up which is liable to affect the individual’s ability to concentrate or stay focussed, then we are legally obliged to notify the DVLA immediately (national driver registrar), and have their driving lisence revoked. It stays revoked until or unless the condition improves with treatment to the point they are deemed safe again. The patient has no say in this at all. As cars are lethal weapons comprable to guns in some ways, it serves as a good example that such can be done.

However, in order for it to work, a socialised healthcare system is essential, so that there is no good reason a person wouldn’t seek a diagnosis if something appears to be wrong with them. Most of the time, the ban is less than a year in length, and if they had not sought treatment, had an accident, and the compulsory healthcheck demanded by the insurance company found evidence of an underlying condition they hadn’t bothered to have checked upon… Well, “up shit creek without a paddle” fits very well in describing their situation.

Besides a list doesn’t need to be completely public, it just needs to be available to any establishment with a permit to sell firearms. (We may have to make some new regulation in regards to gun shows to make sure they are able to check this database as well, but I suppose the issue of regulating gun show sales might be a topic for another thread)

Yea, I was going to point out that a lot of trading doesn’t go through established businesses. An unknown amount is through one mate selling another, their gun. Currently there is no way to track this. A national ballistics database would be a good start, so a gun can always be identified with an owner, and if they didn’t notify the authorities they’d sold the gun, why hello shit creek, how nice to see you again. :)

But of course, the NRA would adamantly block any such database for the same reason they’d block any other listing of guns or owners.

So our options are fairly limited, and a complete solution will not be possible.

 
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Ah well as with everything else in life, no solution is perfect. Still that doesn’t mean any attempt at improving the situation isn’t worth doing. If we can manage to at least reduce the odds of calamity than I would still count it as a victory, albeit a small one. :)

Granted school shooting themselves are a pretty rare event, that’s why the news media always reports them to death instead of covering more common tragedies like people getting shot in a drive by, the numerous disappearances and murders of adults, car accidents, etc. Part of the reason there’s been so many shootings is these psychopaths are just desperate for attention and they see the news cover the same school shooting for months on end. Perhaps we ought to do something to encourage the news media to approach these stories a bit differently. Anyhow, just food for thought.

 
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Fair enough, but I’m willing to bet those British programs weed out all the problem kids before they give them any firearms, and they probably give them more supervision than the typical American public school. That and they probably limit access to fire arms to certain times of day (they probably keep them under lock and key when not in use).

I was in the CCF for five years. The school had its own rifle range where we could use .22 rifles with live ammunition under strict supervision. We also had a large number of Lee Enfield .303 rifles, kept under lock and key behind steel doors in the basement of the school. They would have fired bullets straight through the sandbags and out the wall at the back, so we had to go to army firing ranges to use them under supervision from the regular army. They came from Elvis’ regiment, but were purchased long before he was conscripted, so there was never any question of anyone using Elvis’ gun.

We also had a working 25 pounder field gun, which could be used on the army’s artillery range on Salisbury Plain. I’ve fired some really big live ammo from some of the artillery down there.

There was never any possibility of kids with rifles getting out of control. The CCF is used as a character building aspect of the educational system, and as vika has said, firearms training is just a part of it. And it gives kids experiences they could not otherwise get. Going round a tank assault course is very exciting, but probably the world’s most uncomfortable ride.

 
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Cool :)

Out of curiosity, how rigorous was the sign up process for this program?

 
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It was compulsory for two years. After that you could either stay in or switch to voluntary service, which meant weekly visits to the local Cheshire Home, which was probably much more worthy but not nearly as interesting for me. I was a painfully shy teenager, and the CCF helped to bring me out of my shell, so for me it was a positive experience.