It suddenly sunk in with all this talk about arming school teachers to prevent mass shootings — hey, that’s me! I teach! What kind of gun do I get? A big one? I want something intimidating, you know, like that monster handgun Dirty Harry waves around.
Then I want to know the rules of engagement here. Do I get to shoot students for just carrying a gun, or do I have to wait for them to kill someone first? Do I get the same benefit of the doubt that cops get –like, if I see a student reach inside their coat, or move their hand down towards their belt, is it OK if I shoot them? Just in case?
Also important: if I aim to shoot a suspicious-looking student, and miss and kill some other student in the crowd, I won’t be blamed for it, will I? It’s just collateral damage to protect our precious students, these things happen, it’s just part of the cost of maintaining the peace.
If I murder a student while teaching, I would like to have at least 30 days paid leave, so that I can recover from the emotional trauma. A medal for bravery would be nice, too. I think we should add a section to our yearly tenure and promotion review in which we tally up our confirmed kills, and all the faculty applaud our brave teachers who have shot someone in the performance of their teaching duties.
You can trust me! For sure, I wouldn’t be like that Utah teacher who shot herself by accident. I’d be safe. I’d have the safety on at all time, and no bullets in the chamber, until, that is, it was time for me to intentionally shoot a student, a responsibility I would take very, very seriously.
I am concerned, though, that we have a 14:1 student:faculty ratio here, and I see a lot of my colleagues in the community spaces with students milling about. There’s going to be some intense competition to bag students, and I’m going to have to be quick on the draw if I want to be first. Maybe I need a bigger gun? Or two guns? Or maybe a hand grenade? I wouldn’t want the chemistry department to get a higher score than the biology department, you know.