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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 a 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."

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.

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.

Tim December 21, 2012 at 10:29 PM
With the right people and training, I'm all for it!
Tim December 21, 2012 at 10:30 PM
already looking into becoming a Certified NRA Firearms Instructor
Tammy Osier December 22, 2012 at 01:33 AM
Middle and High schools have SRO's. Why not Elementary schools? One of my very first Patch blogs was on the role of the SRO in a school setting. http://dacula.patch.com/blog_posts/local-police-resource-officers-provide-much-needed-help-for-parents The SRO is not only there to deter the bad guys, but can be a liason for conflicts going on between students, and in the event that a child runs off or gets lost (as happened recently in another school close by), they would be available. SRO's are a valuable resource and definately a wise investment of our money.
George Wilson December 22, 2012 at 04:29 PM
When you are in trouble with a position, like Wayne Pierre and the NRA, you do what most people do: 1. Change the subject (guards needed in schools) 2. Blame it on someone else (the media and the entertainment business) 3. Deny it (when did guns become the villain asked Wayne LaPierre rhetorically during his news conference?) Let's start from the top with number one. Most schools have security officers, Virginia Tech and Columbine did and many schools already do. Do we also include guards at most locations where people congregate; ie, movies, ball games, etc.? The expense for schools would be about 6.7 billion dollars .Who pays? The Republicans have over the last ten years cut five billion from schools in Georgia. Where will schools get the money? Perhaps a special tax on bullets and guns could be passed? Lets' take the number two argument. Japan is noted for its extremely violent video games yet the per capita deaths by guns is very small .This also applies to Germany,Canada,Great Britain, and other countries they also looks at the same movies we do and play the same video games. The number three argument is the gun industry is enjoying a boom with 5 % of the world's population the United state owns 50% of all guns. Wayne LaPierre is paid over one million dollars a years in salary. This money comes from the gun industry and the 4 million members that the NRA keeps in a constant state of agitation and fear in order to keep the money coming in.
Amy December 22, 2012 at 06:11 PM
Now we need to find a way to protect the people from the NRA.
Tim December 22, 2012 at 10:30 PM
I gladly pay my membership dues to the NRA as long as they keep up the fight for our 2nd Amendment rights and gun ownership. Explain to me George how you would protect your family if someone kicked in your door tonight....how would you fight back, or would you be a good little victim...? And as you well know many convicted felons, sexual predators and other criminals read the Patch as well. Or perhaps you just don't care.
Tim December 22, 2012 at 10:31 PM
Amy, you may explain that as well? If someone kicked your door in armed with a shotgun or pistol, how would you defend yourself?
Amy December 23, 2012 at 01:27 AM
Quite honestly Tim, I'm a total girl...a wimpy woman who'd faint at the sight of a gun in my face. I'd leave it all up to God at that point.
Tim December 23, 2012 at 01:39 AM
Amy, you don't have to continue to be. You can choose not to be a victim. I was at the Gun range in Monroe yesterday and saw many couples shooting pistols and rifles. Criminals will always obtain weapons laws or no laws. Honestly, we are all responsible for our own protection. God has given you the wonderful power of choice. You can choose to continue as is, or you can learn to be a fighter. Mentally, emotionally and physically. Facing your fear of a weapon and learning to shoot and protect yourself will give you a confidence that you didn't know you had.
Amy December 23, 2012 at 02:28 AM
I know what you're saying is right and it's logical Tim, but it's hard to get to that point. I'm afraid to say that something horrible has to happen to somebody like me before I get a gun. I do, however, have pepper spray.
thcooper69 December 23, 2012 at 03:46 AM
i find it interesting that a sheriffs deputy and armed was at tha school during the columbine shooting
Sharon Swanepoel December 23, 2012 at 04:35 AM
I find it interesting that hardly any mention is made of the fact that the shooter spent days on end in a basement playing video games. Some of this type of activity is used to train soldiers for combat. There are many issues that need to be looked at in relation to these problems. Gun access is certainly one of them or at least some sort of education on responsible gun ownership. However, just looking at gun control and not taking into account such things as the mental health system, the type of violence Hollywood puts out, these incredible violent TV games and security at our schools, shopping malls, etc. will not lead to a resolution. But then again, that's just my opinion!
Tammy Osier December 23, 2012 at 01:01 PM
Hey Amy, go watch Gone WIth The Wind and watch the scene where the Yankee soldier was coming at Scarlett, following her upstairs as she backed away (he was going to rape and kill her), and she cocked that muskett and killed him. I was a young girl (saw it at FOX Thearer) and had nmightmares for weeks, but sure enough, many times had visions in my head afterwards that if someone came into my house, and tried to hurt my family, that I would have been as braver as her. It's not a matter of owning a weapon. Most people, if that's all they do, would freeze up and the thoughts in your head now would probably come true. I like the advice that someone gave you. Getting trained gives you confidence. I'm thinking of taking some of this advice that I've put off for quite a while. Maybe we could go together - :)
Tammy Osier December 23, 2012 at 01:05 PM
Sharon, that's why I'm thrilled that in this tragic situation, some good has come out of it. We are no longer just talking NRA but looking into the other neglected areas- FINALLY. Which would have been a bigger deterrrent than the SRO's at the Columbine school (that Coop brought up). Coop, it may not deter the crazies like that, but had something been done beforethat, they would'nt have had crazies to contend with to begin with. I also find it interesting that after Columbine, that Bill Clinton proposed allocated money for armed security at each school. It got shot down. So, those who are criticizing the suggestion of the NRA today, are also criticizing their former favorite president.
Tim December 23, 2012 at 01:53 PM
good point and facts Sharon
Tim December 23, 2012 at 01:55 PM
I find it interesting that a certain school district in Texas has permitted armed teachers since 2007.
Tim December 23, 2012 at 01:59 PM
having said that, do I think all teachers or administrators should be armed? Absolutely not. There should be some screening criteria, possibly the same criteria that the police departments use. Psychological as well as Physical proficiency that would determine if someone is capable of carrying and using a weapon for defense and protection.
Tammy Osier December 23, 2012 at 08:18 PM
TIm, I agree. Officers have been through the Academy that trains them for every possible situation. Not only that, POlice Officers have been in the field, under pressure and used their weapons. They have experience. I'm not sure I'd want a nervous Administrator or teacher getting my back (they might GET my back in their fear-lol). All for armed Officers in the schools.
George Wilson December 23, 2012 at 09:26 PM
@ Tim Dial 911 (the police station is one block away)
George Wilson December 23, 2012 at 09:38 PM
@Tim No one is even suggesting that you give up your gun. We need the following: 1. Gun regulations on semi automatic military style assault rifles with magazines that contain up to 40 rounds 2. Close the loop holes on background checks at gun shows 3. A complete and updated national data base for gun purchases (currently only 47% of people who buy guns are given a back ground check) These are reasonable proposals and if a hunter needs 40 rounds to kill a deer than he should try dynamite.
George Wilson December 23, 2012 at 09:46 PM
@Sharon Guns don't kill people the media does...new NRA line. The Japanese are noted for the extreme violence in their video games yet their gun deaths are very low. Why is this? They have gun regulations Most advanced industrialized countries have the same mental health rate that we do but gun deaths are very low. Why is this? They have gun regulations.
George Wilson December 23, 2012 at 09:48 PM
@ Tim That is because the nearest law enforcement is thirty minutes away.
Sharon Swanepoel December 24, 2012 at 12:51 AM
George, my point is that there is no one fix for this and if we try and fix it that way we're doomed to failure. One of the things that concerned me when I first considered emigrating to the USA back more than 25 years ago was the fact that America at that time had 3 percent of the world population and 70 percent of the world's serial killers. It told me there was something deep-routed in the American culture that was troubling. Guns are usually not the weapon of choice for serial killers so in those instances access to guns cannot be considered the trigger.
Tammy Osier December 24, 2012 at 02:57 PM
When an armed Officer from the Police Department is 30 minutes away, and SRo or two on campus is just seconds or minutes. I can't say enough that I am for SRO's on campus of every school. They can't stop the crazies from coming, but can put an end to it more quickly. But for all those that their being there would deter, it's so worth it. Read my article on SRO's. They spend most of their time building a rapport with kids, teaching them, instructing them and resolving conflicts before they occur. And the kids love their Officers the same as they do their favorite teachers. It's win/win when you have them on board. And Sharon, like I said, I'm glad we are finally looking past a political agenda and trying to go to the root of the problem. It's about time. If this president is smart, and means what he said last week, he'd get on board with this instead of his special interest anti gun groups. Bill Clinton went against the flow in the 90's but his ideas (similar to the NRA now) got shot down. Maybe it won't this time.

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