Monday, 27 August 2018

DeVos Considering Whether Fed Grants Can Be Used by Schools to Buy Guns

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After reportedly receiving requests from people in Texas and Oklahoma, Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos (shown) is considering whether states might be permitted to use federal education grants to buy firearms for teachers and the training to effectively use those firearms, according to a story first reported by the Washington Post.

Not surprisingly, even the possibility that such a thought might be mulled over by DeVos drove Democrats and other proponents of federally managed education to explain how fewer guns, not more, will make schools safer from armed madmen bent on indiscriminate murder of innocents.

The purported parent of one of the victims of the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, warned that if DeVos gave the go-ahead to states to use federal funds to arm teachers, then money otherwise available for other needs wouldn’t be available.

As reported by the Washington Post:

“Devos, after my daughter was murdered, you yelled ‘Don’t talk about guns, talk about mental health,'” Fred Guttenberg, whose daughter Jaime was killed in the Parkland shooting, wrote on Twitter. “Your brain dead plan will pull money from mental health.”

The money being tied to the possible arming of teachers comes from Student Support and Academic Enrichment grants.

These grants distribute money to state education agencies and are “designed to improve access to a well-rounded education, improve school conditions for learning, and improve the use of technology.”

Detractors mock DeVos for even considering whether an armed faculty would improve school conditions, yet these are the same people who justify gun-free school zones by that precise rationale!

In fact, teachers who praise the “protection” afforded by gun-free school zones, call the notion that armed faculty and staff could deter future shootings at schools “insane.”

“Instead of after-school programs or counselors, programs that are critical for creating safe and welcoming schools and addressing the mental health needs of kids, DeVos wants to turn schools into armed fortresses and make kids and educators less safe,” said Randi Weingarten, president of the American Federation of Teachers.

“She wants to turn the U.S. government into an arms dealer for schools. That’s insane.”

Putting aside the fact that the U.S. government has actually been an arms dealer for Mexican drug cartels (Operation Fast and Furious), it seems Weingarten is shooting wide of the mark in this prediction.

There are conservatives, however, who would welcome the funneling of federal funds into state coffers for the purpose of purchasing guns, ammunition, and training for school teachers.

Why must one look to the government — federal, state, or local — for protection for our most valuable and vulnerable: our children?

Have we been living in our statist stupor for so long that we believe self-protection to be not only unnecessary, but unthinkable?

Why must the answer to the tragedy of school shootings be planned and executed by government? Why can’t the people, exercising their natural right of self-defense, choose to carry or not to carry arms? Why must government insinuate itself into every problem, promoting itself as the source of all solutions?

Whether Secretary DeVos decides to redirect money from federal programs to the states with the instruction that they be available for the purchase of guns, ammo, and training is unconstitutional in its totality.

There is not a syllable in the Constitution granting authority to the federal government to direct the education of the country’s children. There is not a syllable in our Constitution that would allow the Congress power to make laws establishing funds for use in furthering education. Therefore, the power over such concerns remains with the states and the people, per the terms of the 10th Amendment.

And there we have it. As “conservatives,” and certainly as constitutionalists, we believe the answer to all of society’s ills — economic and social — lies in the power of the people to act in ways conducive to their own safety and their own liberty.

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Photo: AP Images

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