Should We Put Metal Detectors in Schools? Part 2

This is the second part of a "point, counter-point" on the issue of mental detectors in schools. Read Part 1 here.

Keeping our schools safe is essential – but how far is too far? 

It has become entirely normal to expect a white terrorist to walk into your school with an AR-15 and cause a massacre. School shooting drills have become a part of a routine of emergency drills schools have to practice all across America. Since the University of Texas school shooting that occurred on August 1, 1966, 472 people have died in their schools due to mass shootings or gun violence. Gun violence is an epidemic that has become unique only to the United States.

Many right-wing politicians have come up with the idea to arm our teachers with guns, install metal detectors in schools, and put fences around schools as a solution to prevent schools shootings from happening again. The problem is those “solutions” are only going to be temporary. It’s like sticking a band-aid on a stab wound. It is not going to fix anything, and it’s not going to get to the root of the problem, which is guns

Would we rather turn our schools into prisons than change our gun laws and demand common sense gun reform? On April 28, 1996, a man walked into a café in Port Arthur, Tasmania, Australia and opened fire with a semi-automatic rifle, killing 35 people and wounding another 28. Australia’s federal system introduced a revolutionary gun reform called the National Firearms Agreement (NFA). After they enacted it, they haven’t had a mass shooting since. 

Australia and many other countries have proven that gun control works in stopping gun violence. If we put metal detectors in schools, does that mean we have to put metal detectors in restaurants? Concert venues? Movie theaters? Colleges? Churches? Nightclubs? Is our world going to turn into a military camp, with our freedom being reduced in the process? 

A world like that sounds like a militant dystopia, wasting money on unnecessary installments when we could just solve the problem by introducing legislation in Congress with the goal of preventing gun violence. 

The difference between airports and schools installing metal detectors is that, with airports, civilians are in a private space where they are about to board a high-risk aircraft that could be in danger at any minute. In schools, young people are attending a usually public institution where they are there to get an education, that is it. The last thing we need to do is create a stigma that kids are the cause of mass shootings. Militarizing our schools will cause officers and administrators to racially profile black and brown students, and point fingers at students that have a reputation for being antisocial or quiet. It only creates stigmas that will be dangerous to black & brown students and students with mental illnesses. It has been proven that mentally ill people only contribute to 3% of violent crimes.

Here is the solution all of us need to focus and act upon. Call and write your government officials and demand a change in our gun laws. Call on Congress to:

1.    Enact a resolution declaring gun violence a public health crisis.

2.    Ban assault weapons and high capacity magazines.

3.    Expand background checks and end the gun show loophole.

4.    Pass the Federal Gun Violence Restraining Order law.

5.    Pass an act to demilitarize law enforcement.

6.    Make guns as hard to get as a driver’s license.   

Attend the March for Our Lives on March 24th in Washington D.C. or one of its sister marches.  Go to https://everytown.org/https://marchforourlives.com, or https://www.csgv.org/ to find out more information on how to contact Congress, attend a March for Our Lives event, and to stop gun violence once and for all.