ONTD Political

Maine, Texas GOP Consider Requiring High Schools To Teach Gun Classes

5:06 pm - 02/15/2013
In middle of the national debate on preventing gun violence, Republican lawmakers in Texas and Maine want gun classes added to public schools. Modeled after a National Rifle Association school program for children, similar proposals that claim to enhance “gun safety” have also popped up in South Carolina and Missouri.

According to the Texas bill sponsor, Rep. James White (R), kids are “resilient” enough to handle guns, which he says are no more dangerous than weightlifting or auto mechanics:

“Education, foremost, as stated in our Constitution, is about teaching our people their rights and responsibilities as a free people,” said White, who emphasizes that the most important component of the class would be teaching students the history and importance of the Second Amendment.

You could go to any high school today and you’ll see them engaging in many what we would consider probably dangerous activities: Welding, auto mechanic, weight lifting, playing sports. So our students are not these little fragile beings. They’re very knowledgeable, they’re very resilient and they can handle this.”


Meanwhile, a bill under consideration in Maine — which has drawn support from Gov. Paul LePage (R) — would add an optional gun safety course, potentially paid for by the NRA’s “Eddie Eagle Gunsafe Program.” The Maine bill sponsor Rep. Paul Davis (R) claimed this course would manage to prevent domestic violence, by giving would-be victims firearms training. “In these situations, these victims [of domestic violence-related slayings] did everything the law provided,” Davis said. “I have to wonder if they knew anything about guns. I don’t think they did. However, if they did and they wanted to protect themselves, what would have happened?”

Instead of offering NRA-sponsored classes at schools, the ultimate way to protect kids from gun violence is to simply not have a gun lying around. According to the Centers for Disease Control Prevention, over 86 percent of firearm deaths of children occur at home. Guns in households increase the risk of suicides and homicides, while anecdotal evidence shows how armed guards and armed teachers could go very wrong.

Source

schexyschteve 17th-Feb-2013 03:23 am (UTC)
NO NO NO NO NO

kids are “resilient” enough to handle guns, which he says are no more dangerous than weightlifting or auto mechanics

Except welding, auto mechanics, weight lifting, and sports serve purposes other than killing.
wikilobbying 17th-Feb-2013 03:57 am (UTC)
Modeled after a National Rifle Association school program for children

NOPE. get them away from gun handling and safety programs. i wish i could remove them from anything and everything related to guns other than treating them as an example of 'how to be wrong' and 'how to be insufferable douches.'

especially in states like these, are you really going to tell me there is nowhere else these kids could learn about firearms and handling them safely? no courses or programs that exist outside of school? if those aren't very accessible in certain area, maybe focus on supporting strong courses/programs and making them more accessible. but bringing those programs into schools, i just don't see how they fit.

and

The Maine bill sponsor Rep. Paul Davis (R) claimed this course would manage to prevent domestic violence, by giving would-be victims firearms training.

1. have you really never heard of dv/abuse victims shooting their perpetrators/abusers?
2. have you ever thought that you might also be giving firearms training to would-be (hell, current) abusers? way to go~
freezer 17th-Feb-2013 04:58 am (UTC)
2. have you ever thought that you might also be giving firearms training to would-be (hell, current) abusers? way to go~

As shaky as Rep. Davis' logic is, this isn't much stronger. That's like saying maybe Driver's Ed is a bad idea because we might be training future car thieves and getaway drivers.
wikilobbying 17th-Feb-2013 05:23 am (UTC)
granted i never took my high school's driver's ed course, but does driver's ed make a habit of teaching students how to steal cars? if so, i am thoroughly concerned. if not, i'm not sure how it's at all comparable, especially when i don't recall people suggesting that would-be victims of car theft to take up driver's ed. what i'm saying is, i support strong firearms training (outside of high schools...) but i'll be damned to let one of these guys pretend it has anything to do with anybody learning how to protect themselves in domestic violence situations with a firearm. he gives no actual fucks about domestic abuse when he's pushing something like this, so he can put that card down.
moonshaz 19th-Feb-2013 05:03 am (UTC)
This.
mingemonster 17th-Feb-2013 08:40 am (UTC)
No, it's not. There's a well documented correlation between murder and having an immediately lethal weapon close at hand.
layweed 17th-Feb-2013 04:16 am (UTC)
Rly Texas? You slashed education funding to the bare bones in the last legislative session (unconstitutionally, I might add), are refusing to reinstate the funding now that funds are available, and now you want to add gun classes to the curriculum? What the what?
ericadawn16 17th-Feb-2013 04:20 am (UTC)
Doesn't Alaska require gun classes because of the prevalence of bears and wild animals?
I didn't see the article address that.
dark_puck 17th-Feb-2013 05:37 am (UTC)
...If that was the case it would probably be with hunting rifles of some kind. I suspect the Texas plan involves handguns.
anolinde 17th-Feb-2013 04:38 am (UTC)
I wish I knew how to better defend myself against a gun. I did a couple of lessons on it in karate a few years ago, and I still remember the basic maneuvers, but it'd be nice to know more about how to disarm someone/disable the gun.
mollywobbles867 17th-Feb-2013 05:03 am (UTC)
What I learned was: give them what they want if it's just a material thing. If you have to fight for your life and have no other choice, grab hold of it, making sure it's pointing away from you and try to wrestle it away. Elbow them in the stomach, stomp on their feet, chop their forearms with your hand, etc. Expect to get hurt. I don't remember how to get close enough to do all that, though.
anolinde 17th-Feb-2013 04:36 pm (UTC)
Yup, that pretty much lines up with what I was taught. We basically learned if the gun was being pointed right at your head, but I have no idea how you'd get close enough to disarm the person if they were smart enough to stay away.
lickety_split 17th-Feb-2013 04:53 pm (UTC)
IA
freezer 17th-Feb-2013 04:50 am (UTC)
Make it an elective and I'd be all for it. The more people who have it drilled into them that guns are not toys AND how to properly use the damn things, the better.
liliaeth 17th-Feb-2013 07:28 am (UTC)
And the first ten classes or so should involve kids watching videos and pictures of people getting shot and the after effects, aka death, injuries, life long suffering for the surviving family and so on...
freezer 17th-Feb-2013 07:38 am (UTC)
Red Asphalt for guns? I'd be down for that.
liliaeth 17th-Feb-2013 09:22 am (UTC)
A big part of the problem with guns is that in far too many shows, movies and so on, the hero gets shot, and is up and running, acting as if he just got a scrape in the scene right after. Most kids don't realize just how much damage a gun can cause. I'd think they'd be a lot more careful and a lot less likely to shoot themselves, a friend, sibling, ... if they actually were forced to deal with some some real life consequences of what to them seems like a 'fun toy'

Edited at 2013-02-17 09:23 am (UTC)
mutive 18th-Feb-2013 01:37 pm (UTC)
Arguably, a lot of gun safety classes do give this, and show pretty horrific stories of people being injured/killed.

To me, a lot would depend on how it's being taught. Knowing basic gun safety isn't a *bad* thing, especially if it's reasonable to expect that the students will be exposed to guns. (Either because they're able to easily buy them as soon as they turn 18 or because we expect their parents to have them around the house.) So if the gun safety class mostly involves "guns can kill, these are the best ways to prevent accidentally killing yourself or others, and these are some horror stories of what can happen if you misuse a gun" (which, to be fair, a lot of gun safety classes *do* cover), I'd be just fine with the classes.

If they're expected to be, "Guns are awesome! More guns!" not so much.
corinn 17th-Feb-2013 04:55 am (UTC)
said White, who emphasizes that the most important component of the class would be teaching students the history and importance of the Second Amendment.

Oh. I thought the most important component of the class would be gun safety. My bad.

And Mister Smarmy Victim-Blamey Guy can fuck off. Ugh.
zinnia_rose 17th-Feb-2013 05:16 am (UTC)
A class on gun safety that focused on "if you see a gun, DO NOT TOUCH IT and find an adult" could be a very good thing. A class full of Second Amendment wank? Oh hell no.
_cheshire 17th-Feb-2013 05:35 am (UTC)
you know what would help decrease domestic violence rates? PUNISHING THE FUCK OUT OF ABUSERS AND TEACHING PEOPLE TO NOT FUCKING ABUSE OTHERS.

I am so goddamn tired of all the responsibility being put on the victims. "Oh sorry, we can't respect you/the terrible abuse/rape/etc you suffered because you didn't fight hard enough so clearly you deserved it!" let's just throw guns at the problem because they're just magic problem-solving unicorns or something, ahkshdakfhdkhd I want to punch a wall

/this mess of a comment
meadowphoenix 17th-Feb-2013 05:46 am (UTC)
I have to wonder if they knew anything about guns. I don’t think they did. However, if they did and they wanted to protect themselves, what would have happened?"

Maybe try reading your damn case law and find out how many domestic abuse victims have been tried and convicted of 1st degree murder, for not protecting themselves at the "right" time then.

Edited at 2013-02-17 05:47 am (UTC)
beetlebums 17th-Feb-2013 07:19 am (UTC)
So the republicans are basically just getting the US ready for the post-capitalist-appacolypse society?
kittenmommy 17th-Feb-2013 07:30 am (UTC)

WHAT COULD POSSIBLY GO WRONG!
hinoema 17th-Feb-2013 09:55 am (UTC)
“Education, foremost, as stated in our Constitution, is about teaching our people their rights and responsibilities as a free people,” said White, who emphasizes that the most important component of the class would be teaching students the history and importance of the Second Amendment.

You mean the second amendment that clearly allows for the existence of a "well regulated militia", an organized group for a specific reason, and allows the right to bear arms for that reason? You lot don't even get that, and it's right there in the text.
jasonbeast 17th-Feb-2013 12:54 pm (UTC)
Yeah, try that. That'll end well.
redstar826 17th-Feb-2013 02:44 pm (UTC)
I wouldn't mind a safety course that taught kids that guns aren't toys, to assume that any gun the find is loaded, to tell an adult if they find a gun and don't touch it, etc. But I sure as hell don't want a mandatory class where kids are handling guns/being taught how to shoot a gun. I'd be okay though with an after school hunting club that taught hunting related stuff to older kids with parental permission. Although in my experience the vast majority of hunters learn from their parents or other family members.
nonnycat 17th-Feb-2013 09:43 pm (UTC)
^ this, basically. Considering I read in the news several times a year, on average, about some kid hurting themselves or others because their dumbass parents had guns around but they were never taught firearm safety and thought they were toys... honestly, I don't think a gun safety class is a bad idea.

Modeling it after the NRA, however, is.
lurkerwisp 19th-Feb-2013 08:41 pm (UTC)
If it helps any - the Eddie Eagle class material already provided by the NRA that this claims to be based on teaches "Stop. Don't Touch. Find an adult." as their mantra for what to do if you find a gun. It's really a good thing to teach kids that they're not toys.

EDIT: Grammar fail! Sorry!

Edited at 2013-02-19 08:45 pm (UTC)
nonnycat 19th-Feb-2013 08:48 pm (UTC)
Okay, I didn't know that. That's excellent! When I said "modeling it after the NRA", I meant more the BS of focusing on 2nd amendment rather than safety issues. I could have chosen my words better. :)

What you've described sounds excellent, and honestly, is really needed. I know plenty of responsible gun owners, but you can't count on everyone being like that, and chances are good some kid in your class has a parent or family member that can't be arsed to be responsible with their firearms. -_-
chantalzola 18th-Feb-2013 08:20 am (UTC)
I agree with your whole comment.
kyra_neko_rei 18th-Feb-2013 04:09 am (UTC)
So our students are not these little fragile beings.

The ones at Newton were fragile enough.

So is anyone else any time a speeding bullet meets human flesh.

Bad word choice, dude. Really, really, really bad word choice.
azure_rhymes 18th-Feb-2013 08:37 pm (UTC)
as someone who spent half her life in maine and knows just how many people own guns and how easy it is for rural maine kids to get their hands on them, i'm all for gun safety classes as long as they're really being taught safety and not just LOL LOOK KIDS GUNS ARE REALLY COOL!!!! SECOND AMENDMENT IS BEST AMENDMENT!! i knew PLENTY of kids who were hunting with rifles before the age of sixteen; it was just a normal thing where i lived.

but you know what? so was domestic abuse and violence. and i'm noooot so happy about the idea that the people i know in maine who were abused by people in their homes are only victims because they didn't have access to guns. it's already a huge problem in rural areas and it's almost always swept under the rug cause everyone knows everyone and nobody wants to be the person who ran screaming out of the house because her husband was drunk and trying to throw furniture. everyone will know and it's just SO NOT TAKEN SERIOUSLY by the authorities there and it's so mortifying to be THAT PERSON. i had more than one friend in tears to me at school about how their parents were beating them or verbally abusing them and they just COULDN'T TELL ANYONE bceause then everyone would think of them differently. and i'm sure this isn't a problem specific to maine, but it's something i've seen first hand and it's pretty fresh for me

so mr. rep. davis, how about you address real abuse and violence in your state, not by adding more weapons to the mix, but by educating mainers early and truthfully about abuse and how it starts. and maybe train your cops and courts to take domestic violence calls seriously.
alexvdl 19th-Feb-2013 06:47 am (UTC)
I often say that nothing is more dangerous than a a person with too much knowledge.
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