Right or Privilege?

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Friends came over last night; we ate good, had a few drinks and talked a lot about everything that came to our mind. Sitting down with a group of friends, with different political opinions -yes, I do allow Republicans in our house- is always quiet entertaining.

We talked about everything; the political circus, world news, gossip and of course we talked about the last school shooting. Regardless of our political opinions, we all have one thing in common; we want all children to be safe. We have the same goal, but not the same approach. We want it to end and offer different solutions.

Everybody had something to say last night…less guns, more guns. Stricter gun laws, tougher back ground checks, everything was mentioned, including the solution to arm our teachers.

Just thinking about it makes me flinch inside. The discussion heated up. Guns in schools wouldn’t do any good, if they would be hidden in a gun safe or a desk. No, a teacher would have to wear the loaded weapon at all times, it would be visible to anybody.

I think that’s why I flinch inside. I think back about my own school time and the wonderful memories I have. What kind of memories will today’s children have? The memory that going to school was dangerous? The memory about armed teachers, metal detectors and armed forces on school grounds? But maybe the important part is, that they would have memories, that they survived their school time.

Sometimes pictures can speak louder than words. I looked for some pictures on my tablet and streamed it to our TV. Pictures showing teachers with guns and armed guards on school grounds.

Armed Teachers Israel

I think talking about guns in schools in one thing, actually looking at reality, how it would look like, that’s a totally different ball game. We all were quiet for a few minutes, because it is something to take in, when you see little children in a picture with a gun -even though the weapon is for their own protection. A teacher with a purse and a weapon, standing behind small children. Is this how American school will look like in the future?

The pictures were taken in Israel, which has a long history of terrorist strikes in crowded locations including schools. Fences, metal detectors and armed private guards were part of a strategy overseen by the country’s national police. Armed teachers in the classroom, that something that has long been in practice in Israel, though only a minority of them carry weapons today.

“Only a minority is carrying a weapon today”…what changed? I got curious and wanted to learn more about it.

I think Israel got it right the way the handled it when it was needed. They put the safety of children first, when they armed their teachers…BUT…they didn’t stop there. They although toughened their gun laws.

To obtain a permit in Israel, the applicant must be an adult citizen or permanent resident, speak Hebrew and have no physical or mental disabilities. In addition, there must be a valid reason for carrying a firearm, such as a necessity for work or a security issue. Security guards didn’t take their firearms home until 2014, when a terror attack made them rethink and rewrite the law immediately.

As of earlier this week, criteria included that the applicant be over 21, an Israeli resident for more than three years, have passed a mental and physical health exam, background checks by the Public Security Ministry and shooting exams and courses at a licensed gun range. If given a permit, the holder is allowed to order a single firearm with a one-time supply of 50 bullets from a licensed dealer. He is required to retake the licensing exam and undergo testing at a gun range every three years. He also has to prove he has a safe at home to store the gun. (Source Jerusalem Post)

The Jewish Press says the United States should learn from Israel in the proper licensing and permitting of guns. They have a point there don’t they?

Guns in Israel are ubiquitous. There are no concealed carry laws in Israel, as every visitor sees right away. Guns are plentiful in the street, carried by settlers, soldiers, and security personnel, including the guards in front of schools, restaurants and malls.

Israeli residents point to tight gun control laws the government has in place, with only 2.5 percent of the population legally able to carry a firearm.

I would hate to see good teachers and professors leave and retire, because they don’t want to carry a loaded gun at all times. As it might be easier for younger teachers to adjust to new rules and laws, it might not be so easy for excellent teachers, who do their job since many decades.

We have many soldiers here who come home from Afghanistan and can’t find a job. Wouldn’t they be the perfect candidates to secure our schools? I am almost certain many would be more than happy to do it.

The NRA and their lobby would like my idea to arm the teachers, but they don’t want to hear anything about stricter gun laws. I assume nobody in the NRA has children.

Once when I got sick I complained and whined about getting older. An older friend laughed at me when she heard me whining. “Getting old is not a right, it’s a privilege,” she said and I never forgot. That’s why I get up every morning with a smile on my face, even though I don’t always feel like smiling.

It is a privilege!!!

Maybe owning a gun should not be right, but a privilege as well.

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15 thoughts on “Right or Privilege?

  1. What a terrible state of affairs you live under. As a former teacher I had enough to deal with without the prospect of carrying a firearm on my hip or where ever. To me the gun lobby has an irrational argument, then again the carrying of weapons is illogical to me. Every country has shooting deaths that is true as do we in Australia but the suggestion of arming everyone is ludicrous. Though I guess a few kids I taught over the years may have paid better attention with me packing a firearm.

  2. First of all, there are concealed carry laws. All the people you see carrying openly are military personnel. NO CIVILIANS are allowed to OWN guns, much less carry them opening without a permit. And you may or may not get a permit … you need an actual reason. Are there a lot of military people around? Yes. It’s a civilian/military. There are very few full time people in the army, only young people doing their 3 year required stint and regular people doing their annual 30-days of service. Teachers are NOT armed, at least they were never armed when I lived there. There was a guard at the entrance to every school, but we weren’t armed either. We were there to watch and alert appropriate authorities about anything suspicious. I’m not sure where you’re getting your information, but most of it isn’t true. It really isn’t. Gun laws in Israel quite strict.

    • I mentioned in my post, that only 2 % of civilians carry guns in Israel. The teachers, as seen in two pictures are although security guards – or security guards who function as teachers. Many pictures, like the first one, show armed security on school property. The gun law in Israel was changed in 2014, after a terror attack. They made it easier for civilians in critical areas like Jerusalem to get gun permits. Security and Military Employees can now take guns home with them, before that they had to leave it at their workplace. The adjusted the laws as the needed to.

      I don’t want teachers armed, but I would like to see armed security at schools. I don’t want to read about another school shooting here.

      • Well, arming the guards is an improvement. Every time I did guard duty at the kids’ school, I wondered what I could do other than yell at someone … and somehow, I doubted that would scare them away. But I’m glad the teachers aren’t armed. There’s enough violence and plenty of guns around. It’s fortunate that most people there don’t much like killing. They are protective, but as a whole, pretty much peaceful.

  3. Very good read and topic.
    You’re always so clear while expressing your reasons ( ours , too , in this case)

    …..To say nothing of the phrase you quoted , as for “the privilege of being old” …….
    Poignant , really!

  4. If guns are allowed perhaps they should have a reversible barrel where the bullet comes out backwards. That will soon stop all shooters.
    Or guns with flowers as bullets but with a normal barrel.

    • I think we are at a point where stepping back will be hard. People have the tendency to get angry when they loose rights.
      It’s like in every family, when you sit down and try to come to a solution that fits for all. “Give and take” a compromise is often needed.
      I don’t understand why nothing is done since so many years.

      • I don’t see that going through that kind of procedure that Israel has is denying anyone their rights. I think the bigger problem though lies in the fact that a lot of bad people already have guns. And they’re more than willing to buy, sell, and trade with each other. What do we do about them?

      • Each and every one with a gun permit in this country should be reevaluated. People on any kind of medication that alters the mood, like depression medication should never get a permit to own a gun. Just leaning back saying “we can’t do anything” doesn’t cut it anymore.

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