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Why Trump’s proposal to arm teachers jeopardizes Black students’ lives

This past Tuesday, in an hour-long meeting with the gun violence survivors of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, Trump made headlines when he suggested that armed teachers would have made a difference following the Feb 14th mass shooting in Florida.

As you can imagine, the President received a lot of blowback. So, Trump took to Twitter to clarify his statements, saying he only meant those who have experience with a weapon… or something.

However, yesterday (Friday 22nd) at the annual Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) , Trump doubled down on his stance. This time, however, his words stuck and lingered more heavily.

“A teacher would have shot the hell out of” the gunman if the school permitted concealed carry, he said.

Not only does giving teachers guns align with NRA’s Executive Director and CEO Wayne LaPierre who, only a week after the deadly school shooting in Florida, criticized teaching in schools and claimed “gun-free zones” are easy targets for shooters, but raises a much larger issue: the safety of Black students.

Police officers are the other public employees armed at the behest of the state and we’ve seen how well that has been for African-Americans. We’re talking highly trained officers who are supposed to protect and serve. Yet, police kill Blacks at  disproportionate rates.

If trained armed professionals claim “fear” of their lives in these incidents with unarmed Blacks, imagine then, how the teachers will react whenever fear is invoked at their school.

Not all schools are the same. A lot these schools, especially public ones, have troubled youth who need patience and an ear, not a teacher who wants to play hero.

Asking underpaid teachers who are not even equipped with the proper resources to fulfill their curriculum to take on the responsibly of making life or death split decisions in a country as racist as America, is jut asking for more slain Black lives.

Wayne LaPierre’s whole ‘”the only thing to stop a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun” rhetoric is not applicable in a classroom full of children. The access to these guns in the first place has to be addressed on some degree, not implementing more guns.

Furthermore, what kind of guns are we expecting to equip teachers with? These mass shooting aren’t done by handguns. Does the President propose the gym teacher walk around with an AR-15 strapped on his chest during cardio lessons?

While Trump does bump heads with the NRA on raising the purchasing age of an assault riffle from 18 to 21 and insists that he isn’t referring to teachers, but only those who are “gun-adept” — which Trump says could be 10 or 20 percent of teachers — his solutions are dangerous to millions of Black students out there who are targets simply because of their skin tone.

Only time will tell what measures are going to be taken to make a difference, let’s just hope it’s not at the expense of precious Black lives.