NEA President: Allowing Teachers to Carry Puts ‘Pressure’ on Teachers to Have Guns, Leads to ‘More Violence,’ and Teachers Won’t Carry

On Tuesday’s “PBS NewsHour,” National Education Association President Becky Pringle argued that allowing qualified teachers to carry guns in school “puts more guns into schools, we know more guns equals more violence,” and will put “pressure” on teachers “that the society believes that they are the ones that should be defending our kids with guns.” And also “won’t do anything” because teachers won’t take up the option to carry guns.

Pringle stated, “We know that our educators all over this country are focused on teaching and nurturing and supporting our students. For there to be a law that has them armed, which, of course, puts more guns into schools, we know more guns equals more violence, and for them to bear that responsibility, it is absolutely, absolutely unconscionable, overwhelmingly do not support this. And let me tell you this statistic, in 2013, the state of Texas passed a similar law. Only 361 out of a possible nearly 370,000 teachers who are in the state of Texas actually took them up on that. So, we know that’s not a solution. It’s not. It is a false idea that won’t do anything.”

“NewsHour” Correspondent Stephanie Sy then asked, “Just to be clear, my understanding of the Ohio law just signed is that it gives teachers the options. So, I just want to say that one of the perspectives from supporters of arming teachers is that it gives them the ability to protect themselves and their classrooms if they choose to be armed. Is there any scenario in which you see, with the proper training, that a teacher should have that option?”

Pringle responded, “I’ve talked to teachers all over this country, and I will tell you, as a teacher who taught for over 30 years, educators always take that additional responsibility on. They always feel like it’s their responsibility to stand in the gaps for our students. So when laws like these are proposed, it puts that pressure on them that the society believes that they are the ones that should be defending our kids with guns. That’s not OK to put that pressure on them. And we will continue to speak out against that.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett

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