For several years now, there has been a debate in the U.S. over whether or not teachers should be allowed to have guns in the classroom. After the many school shootings that have occurred in our country, a lot of people think it's absolutely necessary. It's the only way to guarantee that teachers can protect students from future attacks. But many disagree, saying that guns should be kept out of schools completely. They believe it's an over reaction to think that teachers should be armed.
It doesn't feel like such an over reaction in Pakistan, where school attacks are commonplace. Since the Taliban attacked a school in Peshawar this past December killing 150 people, security measures at schools in Northwestern Pakistan have been extremely heightened. Over the past few years, the Taliban has bombed or burned more than one thousand schools in the country, effectively putting the entire school system under attack.
With such a high threat, it seems obvious that teachers should be armed, yet the debate continues. Many people, including the teachers themselves, believe that guns have no place in schools. Some teachers are going through firearms training to comply with policy, but they do not fully support it. Naheed Hussain, an assistant professor at Frontier College for Women in Pakistan said "We will not replace our pens with guns. But the situation could arise where we are required to serve our country."
It doesn't really matter how high the level of threat is, people in both the U.S. and Pakistan agree it is not a teacher's responsibility to defend the life of students. The role of a teacher is to teach. Some even agree that having a gun would hinder the teacher's ability to educate, because it would pose a distraction.
There are more people still who oppose guns in schools because of the simple fact that one teacher with a 9-millimeter pistol would have almost no chance of stopping a group of Taliban members. There is no point in training teachers to become shooters when their efforts would likely be futile in the case of an actual terrorist attack.
Do you believe teachers should be required to carry guns in schools in Pakistan? What about in the U.S.? Let us know in the comments.
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For more info:
The New York Times: Training Teachers to Take Aim Against Taliban
CNN: After terrifying school massacre, Peshawar teachers pack guns
CBS News: Arming America's teachers
The New York Times: Taliban Besiege Pakistan School, Leaving 145 Dead