In one sense, it’s only the warped natural progression in that state—it already permits teachers to carry guns in the classroom. But Texas Republican representative Dan Flynn’s proposal takes it to a preposterous level.
H.B. 868, also known as the Teacher’s Protection Act, would authorize instructors to use “force or deadly force on school property, on a school bus, or at a school-sponsored event in defense of the educator’s person or in defense of students of the school that employs the educator.”
Instructors would also have the right to use deadly force “in defense of property of the school that employs the educator.” Moreover, civil immunity would be granted to those who use deadly force, meaning they would not be liable for the injury or death of student.
With so much concern about law enforcement using excessive force, especially against Blacks, this idea that teachers could essentially fire at will on students—and not be held accountable for their actions—creates another potential crisis, especially for students of color.
To wit: A coalition of civil rights organizations found that Black and Latino students face much higher rates of disciplinary action in schools, which magnifies the so-called school-to-prison pipeline. So if they are already disproportionately targeted by school authorities for their behavior, the chances are increased that deadly force will be used against them by educators
Those who know Flynn is not surprised by his bill. He’s one of Texas’ more radical gun-rights advocates. He has already co-authored legislation to allow guns on college campuses. On top of that, in 2013 he successfully co-authored a law that lessened the minimum number of training hours needed for a concealed handgun license.
The tragedy of the 2012 Sandy Hook shooting when 20 children were killed has charged advocates to have teachers armed across the country, despite the evidence that shows the chance for more tragedies increases with more guns in people’s hands.
An organization called Everytown for Gun Safety, a merger of Mayors Against Illegal Guns and Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America, has ranked Georgia — which ranks eighth in population — first among the states in school and college campus shootings since the Newtown killings.
Since the Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre in Newtown, Connecticut, on Dec. 14, 2012, Georgia has had 12 shooting incidents at K–12 schools or colleges
The state also has some of the most relaxed gun laws in the nation and high gun ownership. Across the South, 38 percent of households have a gun — compared with 35 percent in the Midwest, 34 percent in the West and 27 percent in the Northeast — according to a Pew Research Center survey published in July.