North Fork Locals Mixed on NRA Call for Armed Guards in Schools

Tell us what you think on the issue.

North Fork locals are reacting to statements made Friday by the National Rifle Association’s Wayne LaPierre on the Sandy Hook school shooting, breaking a weeklong silence by the gun organization.

LaPierre blasted the media and entertainment industry for promoting and glorifying violence in what he called a “dirty little truth.” He called it “a callous, corrupt and corrupting shadow industry that sells and stows violence against its own people.”

Among his ideas on how to prevent another unspeakably murderous act like the one Adam Lanza brought to Newtown, was to post armed guards or policemen in every school in America. The money, he said, could come from a variety of sources including the U.S. budget for foreign aid. His idea is to use qualified police, retired or active and reserve military personnel to fill those posts.

Related: You can read a full transcript of the NRA press conference here on the Washington Post website.

We asked Patch readers on Facebook what they thought, and here are some of the responses:

“A totally gun free society, except for those carried by the government ...is called a communist dictatorship. The second amendment is there for a reason. What we need is a culture change in which we have less sensationalized sex and violence glorified in the media on a daily basis. What we have now are reality shows are the new norm and we have lowered the bar on acceptable and accountable behavior. The tragedy in Connecticut was a result of how far down the rabbit hole we have gone in this country in regards to not being attentive enough to what is going on around us. Restricting more of our freedoms in this country is not the answer. Anyone who thinks it is are welcome to speak to friends I have who have lived in Russia before it became a "democratic" state. Check the history books on the steps that Hitler took while in power...one of the first things he did was to disarm the people.” — Theresa M. Meyer

“Totally Insane!! Maybe the NRA would like to fund this! Because I don't see our school districts having to add this to their budgets! Nor should the public at large have to pay for it, so the few idiots that think they are entitled under the law to have assault weapons can do so! If you want a licensed hand gun or hunting rifle ok, but You Do Not Need a Semi-Automatic Weapon on Long Island or any other city or suburb, unless you live in a war zone or the wilds of Alaska!” — Ellen McCarry Hopps

“Sure...let's make it easy for gun violence by PUTTING guns in the schools!!!! :((“ — Carol Horowitz Taddonio

“Timing is so important, why shouldn't we have professionals in charge of protecting the most vulnerable, a gun free zone sign isn't going to stop a murderer, obviously. Left unarmed teachers and children are helpless, but is to put that responsibility on teachers too much? We want their attention on teaching not constantly being on guard duty. Hire cops, guards, professionals to do the job or they better train those teachers damn well how to use a gun for self defense. But don't take away the ability to protect ourselves, that's the worst thing we could do.” — Schmoupy Juntunen

What do you think? Should we post armed guards in our schools to protect our children from another tragedy like at Newtown?

forward thinking December 21, 2012 at 09:20 PM
John December 21, 2012 at 09:20 PM
The young man that committed this atrocity in Ct. entered the school through a window, and was obviously aware of his surroundings. Given that I think if there was an armed guard in the school at the time, he would have been the first victim and not the principal and the violence would have commenced from there. Secondly, who would be hired to fill these positions, ex military, retired police, mercenaries, do we honestly believe that kind of talent will work for the 15-20 dollar an hour schools will pay? For those kind of wages the guards would be more dangerous than the attackers. Perhaps the money would be better spent hiring a professional that is trained to recognize personality disorders to head of this kind of behavior.
Tom December 21, 2012 at 09:34 PM
Probably the most telling lines of his presentation: The only thing that stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun. And when you hear your glass breaking at three a.m. and you call 9/11, you won’t be able to pray hard enough for a gun in the hands of a good guy to get there fast enough to protect you. Five years ago after the Virginia Tech tragedy, when I said we should put armed security in every school, the media called me crazy. But what if -- what if when Adam Lanza started shooting his way into Sandy Hook Elementary School last Friday, he’d been confronted by qualified armed security? 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. And that security is only available with properly trained, armed good guys. Our team of security experts will make this program available to the world for protecting our children in school. And we’ll make the program available to every single school in America, free of charge. That’s a plan of action that can, and will make a real positive, indisputable difference in the safety of our children, and it will start right now.
John December 21, 2012 at 10:01 PM
No, but we want the government taking care of us like they did with pearl harbor, every flood, hurricane, earthquake, and Katrina. "They" will only have guns because as*ho*les like you and the NRA make it possible. Why not when the kids buy their copy books just give the M-16 too?
John December 21, 2012 at 10:04 PM
And all this free of charge? if so you are a real American…Spare me!
Manhattan Mike December 22, 2012 at 01:13 PM
There were 2 armed guards at Columbine. How did that work out? No one thing is going to prevent these massacres from happening, but removing semi automatic weapons from non military or law enforcement is a start.
Frederick R Orestuk December 22, 2012 at 01:34 PM
Unfortunately we have met the enemy and it us. We will not stop the manufacturing of guns, nor the use of games like Halo or Warcraft, etc , or even screen potential gun owners for use of psycho tropic drugs. We cannot even stop the interstate transport of illegal arms. We now live in a atmosphere of fear in gathering. As a group, school, church, baseball game, military base, all have now become potential targets for the criminally insane. Nobody wants to press the red button. So what do we do ? Give everybody over eighteen the right to carry tool or weapon ? In our current national or state political atmosphere nothing will happen in the short term. As a small group we should act to protect the children. Broward County , Florida has armed security in there schools and it is apparently working. If we can grant the "Jitney" a hundred day ferry trial we should be able to come up with a one year trial of armed protection in our schools. "It's our children, stupid"
Concerned December 22, 2012 at 02:07 PM
We need to ban assault guns. We need every gun owner to have a gun license just like a drivers liciense. To get a gun license you need to pass an written exam, an intrusive background check. If you are found with a gun and you do not have the gun license you have a mandatory 3 to 5 year jail sentence. No appeal no plea bargain. Electronic security at all schools tied into the local police station and for high risk schools armed security guards as are found at all corporation campuses across the US. Mental health needs to be a priority and people with serious and dangerous menal condition must be treated at in patient hospitals.
lj December 22, 2012 at 02:40 PM
He wants more guns in the hands of "good" people. They are "good" until they snap or make a bad judgement call. Do we want a culture where guns are the norm? If someone is upset they just reach for their gun? Do we want children growing up in a atmosphere where guns are all around them? A military state for our own protection?
John December 22, 2012 at 02:59 PM
"If you are found with a gun and you do not have the gun license you have a mandatory 3 to 5 year jail sentence. No appeal no plea bargain." The guns used were purchased legally by an adult. Do you honestly believe the threat of a prison sentence for possession of those guns would have mattered to a young man who decides to shoot children and then commit suicide. Do you remember this from last August in Midtown… "The police commissioner, Raymond W. Kelly, confirmed on Saturday that all nine were wounded by police bullets, bullet fragments or shrapnel from ricochets. Mr. Kelly also confirmed that the shooter, Mr. Johnson, never fired another shot after killing a former co-worker." These were trained police officers not security guards, now imagine if this was at a school.
Concerned December 22, 2012 at 03:21 PM
John, Are you proposing all gun be banned? I am not a gun owner and trying to find proper controls as the right to bear arms is not going to change in this country ever. First i said no assault weapons so the Newton killer's Mom would not have been able to have the assault weapons the killer used. I also believe an intrusive background check of the Mom when she applied for a gun license would have found she had an unstable person living in her home. This would cause her to be denied a gun license. When i say intrusive background check i mean very intrusive. Including speaking with local police who would have first hand knowledge of the person applying for a gun license. If the police do not know the person, well then the pay a visit to the home and interview the applicant. If its in a city, say NYC, the local precinct is asked help with the background check. If they find its a law abiding citizen then fine, but if the person is linked to a gang well its a no. NYS has mandatory jail time for illegal gun ownership.
John December 22, 2012 at 03:25 PM
Are you proposing all gun be banned? Absolutely not, what I believe we should spend the money on professionals trained to identify people with problems and deal with them before they show up at a school with a gun. Spend the money on that instead of armed guards.
Concerned December 22, 2012 at 03:26 PM
Lj The NRA speech was a missed opportunity to build bridge on gun control. They blew it and now we need to all communicate through email or whatever means with VP Biden to enact gun controls. Even in Tombstone back is the days of the wild west, Wyatt Earp instituted gun controls in his town. All guns were checked in with him as Marshall. He tamed a ruthless city. He may have trampled on a bunch of rights but he got the job done.
forward thinking December 22, 2012 at 05:12 PM
concerned - hit the nail on the head... the background check of the mom was at least negligent and we should be looking into that -- and yes nra missed the boat - it was time for them to represent their (aledged) professional shooters / hunters. a true pro only need at best two to do the job... with police they should qualify up to 50 ft only after that do not shoot... while i can "nail" a quarted at 50 yrds i think it is usless to shoot ovet 50 feet with any hand gun...
John December 22, 2012 at 05:43 PM
John, Are you proposing all gun be banned? Absolutely not! I do think that any money spent should be for a professional who would see troubled individuals before they show up at a school with a gun, instead of armed security guards.
Tom December 23, 2012 at 11:17 AM
-- In 1997, assistant principal Joel Myrick used a handgun to stop school shooter Luke Woodham.* Woodham, who had killed his mother that morning, murdered two students and wounded several others before Myrick, an Army reservist, rammed his car into Woodham’s and then forced him to the ground. -- At a 1998 shooting at a middle-school dance in a Pennsylvania restaurant, which left one teacher dead and three other people wounded, restaurant owner James Strand took out a shotgun and chased down the teen shooter before persuading him to give up his weapon. -- After 51-year-old teacher Carl Brown opened fire on a Miami welding shop in 1982, killing eight, a man nearby grabbed his gun, jumped in his car, and chased Brown as he fled on his bicycle. The pursuer fired what he said was a warning shot, striking Brown in the back, and then ran Brown into a light pole. (Dade County State’s Attorney Janet Reno concluded that the pursuer had used “justifiable force.”)
Tom December 23, 2012 at 11:19 AM
-- Armed interventions by retired and off-duty police officers, who have been trained to react, are more common. When a shooter entered an AT&T store in 2010 in a small New York town with a list of six employees he planned to kill and shot one of them, a shopper who was an off-duty officer drew his .40 caliber handgun and killed the man. -- A 2007 rampage in Trolley Square, Utah, was put to an end after an officer, who was on a date with his wife, engaged the man in a shootout. The off-duty officer kept the 18-year-old shooter pinned down until more police arrived and killed the shooter. -- In a 2006 school shooting, London Ivey, a school resource officer; and Russ LeBlanc, a former state trooper and driver’s ed teacher, confronted a Columbine-obsessed attacker in North Carolina who was firing at cars outside the school and had killed his father that day. Armed with his pistol, Ivey ordered the student to drop his weapons, and LeBlanc (who was unarmed) put him in handcuffs. -- In another oft-cited example, a student who opened fire at the Appalachian School of Law in 2002 was brought down by a group of law students who were trained as police officers. Two of the students had armed themselves during the shooting and were involved in subduing the gunman.
Tom December 23, 2012 at 12:23 PM
The point simply being that perhaps the man, LaPierre, has a point (especially for a frenchman. I would have instinctively expected him to simply surrender the NRA based upon that fact alone). Will his idea solve the problem entirely? Clearly not. Is it something to be considered? Clearly yes. We sit here in the northeast and pontificate to the rest of the nation, that live quite a different lifestyle and in quite a different atmosphere than we do, saving for some of Florida and the left coast. The results in Newtown would not have been significantly different were the shooter armed with a completely legal semiautomatic and completely legal 10 round magazines, as it takes less than 1 second to swap out a magazine in any gun out there. Lanza was there for approximately 10 minutes, and 10-15 seconds of magazine changing wasn't going to stop him. What did stop him was the police showing up, with their guns. Research what the net impact on the last >10 round magazine ban was on US gun sales, and you'll see that the sale of 9mm handguns (which use 15-16 round magazines) went down, while the sale of .45 caliber (larger bullet, for the unfamiliar) handguns vertical. In short, limit the magazine, and the caliber, the killing power, goes up. So that's not a "one stop shopping" solution. There is no one solution as there are multiple factors causing these events. Singling out guns as a remedy is not solely curative. There is a societal factor involved, and we must address, it.
joe insider December 24, 2012 at 02:08 AM
You are correct Tom, there are multiple factors that cause these events. To look at gun control as the only remedy is simplistic and, most likely, ineffective. That being said, it is equally simplistic to remove the notion of gun control from the table. What LaPierre did was to offer a solution that is worth looking at. But he did so at the same time that he took another solution off the table- and that is even the slightest discussion of stronger gun control measures. Perhaps the position of some that stronger gun control measures will solve the problem is a bit myopic. However, to completely oppose even the mere suggestion that current gun laws are insufficient is equally myopic. Your statistics outlining the impact of the last "assault weapon" ban simply demonstrates how poorly written that ban was. In fact, it wasn't a ban at all. The criteria used to define "assault weapon" had next to nothing to do with the discharge rate of the weapon. The best approach would be to leave the entrenched and hardened positions at the door and put everything on the table. Yes, I do own a gun and have been shooting for a long time.
Concerned December 24, 2012 at 03:14 AM
This forum is an important exchange of ideas. None of have the answers. I am convinced that assault weapons must be banned. Gun controls must be reformed. We must have background checks that are intrusive and require gun owner licensing. A written test must be passed. For example, if in Newton Ct, the Mother of the killer should of had to applied for a gun license. The local Police shuld have been asked is there any reason the Mother should not be provide a a gun license. I believe the Police would have said no, since she had an emotionally unstable person living in her home. If they did not know her, then the local police should be required to visit the Mothers home and interview her and anyone living in the home. Well it would have been very clear that due to her ill son, no way she would be given a gun license. Also a social worker would be assigned to ensure the killer would of been institutionalized. Intrusive background check with local police providing key input is needed.
joe insider December 24, 2012 at 04:35 AM
Sorry but you presume that the young man was emotionally unstable prior to the events. There is nothing in the reports that I am aware of that suggest that there was such knowledge that he was unstable. Simply being autistic does not make someone unstable. In fact, there is no greater occurrence of violence or aggressive behavior among autistic people then of the general population. You somehow think that, as a mother of an autistic child, she shouldn't have been allowed a gun. There is no statistical basis to support your contention. Further, to suggest that the killer would have been institutionalized forgets the fact that, up until that fateful day, he was not a killer nor were there signs that he would be a killer. Please do not stereotype the mentally challenged.
Concerned December 24, 2012 at 04:44 AM
Joe Insider, You are misinformed. He was isolated and lived in the basement of his home. The basement had pictures of every gun used by the military over its history. He was burning himself as he could not feel pain. The Mother needed help. He clearly had a dual diagnosis beyond autism. An intrusive background check would of kept guns out of that home and his Mother would of received the support she needed to deal with an emotionally unstable son. Instead she was killed in her bed and multiple murders were perpertrated on an elementary school.


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