South Dakota is the first state to legalize possession of firearms by school employees. The provision was signed into law back in March, but it took effect on July 1. Writing for Opposing Views, Sarah Siskind summarized the contents of the bill:
“The controversial law, known as the “School Sentinel” was signed into law by Gov. Dennis Daugaard (R). Specifically, the law stipulates that teachers must get permission from the school district. Additionally, local law enforcement agencies must work with school employees to properly train teachers how to handle firearms. While similar laws have passed in local districts around the country, a statewide legalization of firearm possession by school employees is unprecedented.”
The law is especially aimed at those schools who could not afford to hire a security guard. So, if there are teachers in those schools who want to carry a firearm, they have to first seek permission from their district, and upon approval, they’d have to obtain training from a local police department.
This is a very good first step for the protection of kids at public schools. Of course, there are opponents to the law who probably think that this provision will turn schools into the “wild west.” Because any time guns are introduced into the hands of Americans, blood baths always follow. (Well, curiously, the bloodbaths usually occur in gun-free cities like Chicago and Detroit.)
But not every teacher will want to carry concealed. Only a few. And maybe that’s for the best, because we know how many teachers are scared to death of gun-shaped pastries and pointed fingers. We wouldn’t want them carrying a real gun.
Not only that, but a Lanza-like psycho entering a school would be greeted with the element of surprise. He wouldn’t have any idea who was and who wasn’t armed. It would actually be better to have a few armed school officials carrying concealed than to have a school security guard who might as well have a target emblazoned on his torso.
This might be a good step toward arming responsible schoolteachers and officials, but the main hurdle in all this will be getting the school district’s approval. I imagine that the relatively few teachers in South Dakota who would want to exercise their 2nd Amendment liberties on campus would be met with opposition by the school board. But this is only the first state to have such a law. Maybe the next state to do this will want to bypass the school district altogether.