What Do Combat Vets Think Of Trump’s Proposal To Arm Teachers Against School Shootings?

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President Donald Trump, joined by Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student Carson Abt, right, and Julia Cordover, the student body president at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, left, pauses during a listening session with high school students teachers, and others in the State Dining Room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2018.
Associated Press/Carolyn Kaster

In the aftermath of the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre in Parkland, Florida, President Donald Trump offered a simple solution to end the United States’ sad tradition of school shootings: Arm teachers with “military or special training experience” against potential gunmen.


Responding to criticism of a Wednesday listening session in which the president proposed concealed carry among school faculty and staff “adept with the firearm,” Trump tweeted on Thursday that teachers “must be [on] offense” because “defense alone won’t work.”

It’s worth honing in on one particular element of Trump’s proposal: the prerequisite of some sort of firearms training. And consistent, rigorous training, beyond entry-level boot camp rifle or pistol quals, matters: One of the reasons bystander interventions during mass shootings are rarely effective is that a significant portion of firearms owners never received formal safety or marksman training, according to a July 2017 public health study. (Heck, just consider the “18 school shootings this year alone” statistic that’s been bandied about recently; most of those “shootings” were accidental discharges.)

Instead of would-be Rambos, Trump’s logic goes, perhaps it’s those Americans who fully understand and respect the power of firearms who are worthy of safeguarding our schoolchildren. To which a lot of veterans on Twitter responded: Fuck that noise.

This ... is not a new trend!

When it comes to the efficacy of armed vets in school, I’ll let people who have actually seen combat make that assessment.

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Pearl Harbor survivor Lauren Bruner attends the dual interment of fellow USS Arizona survivors John D. Anderson, boatswain's mate 2nd class, and Clarendon R. Hetrick, seaman 1st class, at the USS Arizona Memorial in Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, as part of the 75th anniversary of the attacks on Pearl Harbor. (U.S. Navy/Petty Officer 2nd Class Somers Steelman)

Just before 8 a.m. on a Sunday morning 78 years ago, Lauren Bruner was preparing for church services and a date that would follow with a girl he'd met outside his Navy base.

The 21-year-old sailor was stationed as a fire controlman aboard the U.S. battleship USS Arizona, overseeing the vessel's .50-caliber guns.

Then alarms rang out. A Japanese plane had bombed the ship in a surprise attack.

It took only nine minutes for the Arizona to sink after the first bomb hit. Bruner was struck by gunfire while trying to flee the inferno that consumed the ship, the second-to-last man to escape the explosion that killed 1,177, including his best friend; 335 survived.

More than 70% of Bruner's body was burned. He was hospitalized for weeks.

Now, nearly eight decades after that fateful day, Bruner's ashes will be delivered to the sea that cradled his fallen comrades, stored in an urn inside the battleship's wreckage.

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Editor's Note: This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

Joshua Kaleb Watson has been identified as one of the victims of a shooting at the Naval Air Station Pensacola, CBS News reported.

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