As the gun debate rages on after the Florida school shooting last week, one MSNBC host reveals that guns are his primary fear, and not criminals through his question to a Texas police chief.
Sheriff Paul Cairney of Argyle, Texas was talking to MSNBC host about allowing teachers to carry firearms at school to protect students.
The Argyle Independent School District has allowed teachers and staff members to be armed since 2014 in response to the Sandy Hook shooting, The Daily Caller reported.
The MSNBC host seemed shocked at the practice and asked about people’s concerns about student’s safety at a school with guns inside.
“How do you respond to people who say, there are a lot of options for protecting schools, this one seems a little beyond the pale,” he asked. “To put a gun, multiple guns presumably, inside a school environment is just too dangerous a thing to attempt. You have a threat on the outside but now you have weapons inside the school building. How do you respond to people who have that concern?”
Cairney calmly explained that the school officials go through a lot of training to be able to carry a gun on school.
“The other thing I’ll tell them is that if you don’t like doing what we’re doing, that’s absolutely fine,” he said. “If you can come up with a better solution than what we’re doing, please give it to us. We will be more than willing to pay attention to it and listen to other solutions.”
He added, “You can criticize if you want, but the day of doing nothing is over. People can’t wait any longer to secure their schools, they have to take action now.”
Staff in the Argyle Independent School District get to choose if they want to volunteer to carry a weapon.
“We’re never going to force somebody to do it that doesn’t feel comfortable in that role,” Cairney said.
After the staff member volunteers, the principal will give the sheriff the okay to move on with the training process. From there, they go through one-on-one intense interviews.
“I’ll sit down and talk with that person and really get an idea of what their motivations are, what their backgrounds are with using weapons and what their mindset is when they take on this role. And help them to understand really the seriousness of this role,” Cairney explained.
After the interview, the candidate goes through a psychological evaluation similar to what a police officer receives before being armed. Once that is passed, they move on to three to five days of intense weapons training where they shoot over 900 rounds of ammunition.
Parents in Argyle expressed their appreciation for their school district’s action to WFAA.
“I absolutely love it. Just knowing that my children are a lot safer, and that teachers know what to do if a shooting occurred,” Tori Bernal said.
Superintendent Ricky Stephens of Keene School District, that also arms teachers, added, “Administrators and teachers are going to be the first ones who arrive, so do you want them to arrive with a pencil or a pistol?”
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