As the former superintendent of the fourth largest school district in the United States [Miami-Dade Public Schools], I would like to offer some suggestions to make make the recent revolutionary recommendation of National Rifle Association President Wayne LaPierre, regarding safety in America’s schools, even more significant.
The fundamental premise of the proposal appears to be based on the fact that only “an armed good guy can stop an armed bad guy.” Since I believe that finding to be the single most intellectually thought provoking concept of the 21st Century, I would respectfully like to offer some suggestions on how to further improve it.
First, I believe all staff members in the schools should be trained and armed. However, we must be respectful of each individual’s role in their school. Only the school principal, the assistant principal and the union steward should be allowed to carry semi-automatic weapons. Specifically, only the school principal will be allowed to carry 100 bullet clips.
All other teachers will only be allowed to carry handguns with a maximum of three additional clips.
Custodians will also be allowed to arm themselves with special rifles with scopes and these employees will be authorized to carry his/her weapon with them at all times so that they can serve as “snipers” as directed by the school principal.
The brilliance of LaPierre’s proposal lies in the fact that if we can scale the number of “good guys” we can ensure that we will always outnumber the “bad guys.” To that end, I propose that we also arm all of our students. Since I realize that the NRA’s greatest concern is the safety of students, I propose that we ensure that the right weapon gets in the hands of the right student. Just like teachers use “learning styles” to improve student achievement, we need to be smart and use “weapon styles.” Elementary age students should only be allowed to carry small caliber weapons with no additional bullets. In some rare cases for “gifted students,” Glocks could be authorized for these lucky students.
At the middle school we need to trust our children with greater autonomy and more destructive weapons.
Finally, high school students should be able to carry the same caliber weapons their trusted teachers also enjoy. However, no student shall be able to carry more that one weapon and in cases where school personnel are asked to participate in the selection of a student’s weapon, all advice shall be given in a gender sensitive manner.
If a student violates any of these rules, his or her right to carry their handgun of choice would be suspended for up to six weeks and only carry up to three knives during said suspension period.
In conclusion, I would make one final observation.
Mr. LaPierre’s suggestion is an affront to every handgun victim in this country. Further, it dishonors the role of teachers in America. His advice is idiotic.
Octavio Visiedo, Coral Gables