Fourteen days have passed since 19-year-old Nikolas Cruz opened fire on students and faculty at Marjory Stoneman Douglass High School. Seventeen people were killed at the Florida-based school, leading Americans and government officials to tackle the ongoing policy debate of stricter gun laws and possibly banning assault rifles.
Made popular by Donald Trump, he proposed arming teachers with firearms to better protect students in the face of a mass shooting. According to the Huffington Post, he even mentioned a bonus for those willing to join the training sessions on how to safely carry a gun. Now, Florida’s Republican representatives are echoing Trump’s statement with a newly approved bill (Feb. 27), that arms and coaches teachers on how to operate a firearm in case of a crisis.
According to the New York Times, law enforcement officials will spearhead the training through a $67 million voluntary “marshal program.” Gov. Rick Scott (R-Fla.) will have to sign the bill into law, but the news site states he’s yet to voice whether or not he is in favor of the proposal.
Instead of arming teachers with weapons, a few educators expressed their need for actual school supplies like pens and dry-erase erasers.
I’m a teacher. I don’t want to carry a gun. I want the people responsible for my safety, and my students’ safety, to do their jobs and make our workspace safe.
— Jared Yates Sexton (@JYSexton) February 21, 2018
#CNNTownHall As a teacher, I’m letting you know I’m not carrying a gun to work. I’m not bringing guns around my children. I am not a police officer or in the army for a reason, I teach kids — I don’t go to war every day. My job is to educate children.
— skye l. (@skyelorenn) February 22, 2018
Hi, I’m a teacher. I don’t want a gun, but WiFi and air conditioning would be nice.
— Elizabeth Graner (@SwearingPoetess) February 23, 2018
I’m a teacher. Don’t give me a gun. Give me the supplies I need, the salary I deserve, and the common-sense gun laws to protect my kids.
— Jocelyn ✡️ (@jocelyndorf) February 20, 2018
I’m a teacher who qualified in the military on the rifle, handgun, light machine gun, heavy machine gun, grenade launcher, automatic grenade launcher, bayonet and hand grenades.
And there is zero chance you’ll convince me a school will be safer if teachers start carrying guns.
— Joseph Connelly (@jcon16) February 20, 2018
Hi, I’m a teacher. I don’t want a gun. I could use some pencils, pens, an industrial pencil sharpener, more books for my classroom library, anchor chart paper, post-its, folders, dry erase marker, poster markers, hand sanitizer, disinfectant spray/wipes, and paper clips.
— Nichole Nikki Gross (@engross) February 24, 2018
Hi, I’m a teacher. I don’t want a gun. I could use some more dry erase markers. Thanks for your time.
— Jacob Leland (@mrdrleland) February 22, 2018
I’m a teacher. It is not desirable nor acceptable for me to carry a gun into my classroom. If I must arm myself to teach, then we’ve failed
— Lynn Nottage (@Lynnbrooklyn) February 22, 2018
Standing at 18, Florida will also raise the age to buy a firearm to 21.