Viewsday

Analysis, discussion and opinions by members of Newsday's editorial board.

Dolman: Armed guards in Staten Island schools won't work, let's move on

How bad is the recent recommendation to put armed guards in Staten Island’s schools? It’s so bad that even professional right-wing shock merchant Ann Coulter has her doubts about the underlying principles. 

In an otherwise scathing attack on liberals and the notion of gun control, she allowed in a conversation with Fox News’ Sean Hannity that the NRA's call for an armed guard in each school could be a problem because the guard might be a crazy person or—if someone burst into the school with a gun—it would be “very easy to know who to take out next.” 

Uhmm … good point, Ann. 

The NRA idea, embraced by the advisory Staten Island Community Education Council, would have enlisted 300 to 500 retired police officers to patrol the halls of the borough’s schools with guns at their sides. 

It’s not going to happen—at least not soon—because New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who oversees the city school system, hates the suggestion. So that’s that. 

But then there’s the Staten Island Advance, which pointed out in an editorial Thursday that the council never really expected its advice to be taken seriously. Rather, it simply sought to create a worldwide buzz, says the paper, and that it did. Or to put the council’s actions in a slightly kinder light, it just wanted to start a conversation.

Well, we’ve had our conversation.

The National Rifle Association sees the idea as an alternative to stricter gun control laws. Others think the specter of gunfights in the hallways between law-enforcement retirees and would-be mass murderers isn’t much of a choice. 

And the search for real solutions continues. 

Pictured above A girl sits on a Newtown bus leaving the new Sandy Hook Elementary School after the first day of classes in Monroe, Conn. (Jan. 3, 2013)

Tags: guns , schools , newtown , ann coulter , staten island , armed guards , police

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