Wednesday, January 2, 2013

State lawmaker proposes allowing school personnel to carry firearms

Posted By on Wed, Jan 2, 2013 at 12:00 PM

Buried in the New Year's Eve confetti was this news tidbit from our friends at Philadelphia's City Paper: A Pennsylvania state lawmaker has proposed allowing school employees to carry weapons to school.

In the wake of the tragic shooting of 20 children and 6 adults at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., on Dec. 14, ideas aplenty have been bandied about for how to reduce gun violence. Among them, the NRA's Wayne LaPierre, who proposed having armed police at schools.

This past week, Pennsylvania Republican state Rep. Gregory Lucas said he would introduce legislation to allow school personnel the right to carry a concealed firearm to school as long as they are licensed to do so and have a "current and valid certification in the use and handling of firearms."

"As we consider ways to improve school safety," Lucas wrote in a co-sponsorship memorandum on Dec. 28. "I believe we have to consider trusting school personnel to serve as a first line of defense"

Lucas is no stranger to the NRA. In an October 2011 letter to Lucas awarding an endorsement, the organization noted his "enthusiasm" for the Second Amendment. And Lucas' campaign website boasts that he is an avid sportsman, "a NRA member, NRA shotgun instructor, NRA coach, & NRA recruiter" and "strong supporter" of the second Amendment.

Cranberry Republican State Rep. Daryl Metcalfe, meanwhile, said in a co-sponsorship memorandum, that he plans to introduce legislation that will "expand the training certification to serve as a school police officer." It also would allow a district to contract security as they see necessary.

"Whether a school district wishes to establish 'school police officers' or 'school security personnel' is a decision best left to the school administration," Metcalfe wrote in the memo. "Our obligation as policy makers is to give them the flexibility they need to address their individual security concerns."



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