05 Mar Is it the gun?
In the 2017 and 2018 Active Shooting cases, shooters have used weapons that the media and others have defined as “weapons of war.” These cases involve weapons with associated terms of bump stocks, high capacity magazines and automatic or semi-automatic weapons. While the current focus (of some) is on the weapon, remember two things: killers will find a way to obtain access to a deadly weapon (firearm, knife, vehicle, or weapon of mass destruction such as a improvised explosive device) and that regardless of the choice of weapon the killer selects, they have expressed and will act on a desire to kill innocent people.
There have been school shootings in schools by both men, women, young boys and girls that have occurred with the killers having legally obtained their weapons. Perhaps if law abiding citizens had access to firearms during the time of the deadly encounter, the number of victims may have been significantly decreased.
There were several school shootings/attacks that took place before the infamous shooting at Columbine High School of April 20, 1999. Enoch Brown in Greencastle, PA occurred on July 26, 1764 where a group of killers entered the school, killed the school master and used edged weapons to attack children.
St. Mary’s School in Newburgh, NY. was the site of an attack on April 9, 1891 where a 70 year old man fired his shotgun at a group of children playing in front of the school.
On May 6, 1940, the Principal of South Pasadena Junior High school shot three officials during his hearing to be reinstated. The Principal then drove to his former school and killed two more teachers.
And on January 29, 1979, a 16 year old female used a .22 caliber semi-automatic rifle given to her by her father. The female fired rounds from at the Cleveland Elementary school in San Diego, CA from her home just across the street from the school.
The shooting killed the principal and school custodian and wounded several children. The female shooter said she hated Mondays and thought this was how she could liven up the day.
In all of these cases, in addition to the cases that have occurred during the 2017 and early 2018 time span, the killers used a variety of firearms and edged weapons in a pre-meditated attack to brutally kill and injure innocent men, women and children. While the current focus is on the famed AR-15, the earlier cases from 1764 through 1979 did not involve the “weapon of war.” So, is it the weapon? As stated earlier, the killers will always find their way to obtain their weapons, select the day, time and location of the attack, and take the actions to attack those selected for their twisted motivation.
The current rhetoric of arming school teachers has often times been misinterpreted (sometimes purposely), and that those teachers will inappropriately use their firearms to intimidate unarmed and innocent school children. Active Shooters/Assailants will kill and continue to do so until competent intervention occurs or when the killer decides to stop their killing. From my research, the highest percentage of Active Shootings where the shooter has been met with return fire from a legally armed person that challenges the shooter, the killing and attacks of innocent people come to a screeching halt.