Just before the holiday, outgoing-Rep. Ron Paul denounced the NRA’s call for armed security guards in America’s schools:
“This is the world of government provided ‘security,’ a world far too many Americans now seem to accept or even endorse,” Paul said in a statement on his website. “School shootings, no matter how horrific, do not justify creating an Orwellian surveillance state in America.”
He continued: “Only a totalitarian society would even claim absolute safety as a worthy ideal, because it would require total state control over its citizens’ lives. We shouldn’t settle for substituting one type of violence for another.”
Paul’s got the right of this. The reaction from the pro-gun control types, and our biased anti-gun media, has been to castigate the NRA for wanting guns in schools, even in the hands of trained security officials. But that’s not the issue. I do believe that allowing guns in schools is a proper response to school shootings. Nearly every mass shooting of the last several decades has targeted a “guns free zone,” no doubt because shooters hoping to rack up a big body count are targeting the places where they know they can shoot the longest without getting return fire.
Making a school or a campus or any other public area a “gun free zone” is about as useful as painting a bulls eye on these areas for would-be murderers. Let’s stop the charade.
But what the NRA called for isn’t more gun freedom, to enable Americans to defend themselves, but rather government intervention to put armed guards in our schools. Paul was right to call that a step toward “creating an Orwellian surveillance state.” The potential for abuse of that power, and mission creep into areas beyond mere school security, is enormous.
As is usually the case, we have a problem created by government intervention that some want to solve with more government intervention. These “gun free zones” that restrict our ability to defend ourselves have made the zones themselves targets for murderers looking for vulnerable prey. The obvious answer is to end the intervention, in this case the restrictive gun policy, that has created the problem.
But instead the NRA, no doubt well-meaning but seriously misguided, is calling for more government intervention. Americans should say “no thanks.”