Saturday, January 12, 2013

California school teachers demonstrate why arming teachers is the LAST thing this country needs to do.

Courtesy of ABC News:  

A California teacher's brave conversation with a 16-year-old gunman who had opened fire on his classroom bullies allowed 28 other students to quickly escape what could have been a massacre. 

Science teacher Ryan Heber calmly confronted the teenager after he shot and critically wounded a classmate, whom authorities say had bullied the boy for more than year at Taft Union High School. 

"I don't want to shoot you," the teen gunman told Heber, who convinced the teen gunman to drop his weapon, a high power shotgun. 

Responding to calls of shots fired, campus supervisor Kim Lee Fields arrived at the classroom and helped Heber talk the boy into giving up the weapon. 

"This teacher and this counselor stood there face-to-face not knowing if he was going to shoot them," said Kern County Sheriff Donny Youngblood. "They probably expected the worst and hoped for the best, but they gave the students a chance to escape." 

One student, who police say the shooter had targeted, was shot. He was airlifted to a hospital and remains in critical, but stable condition, Youngblood said. He is expected to undergo surgery today. 

Two other students received minor injuries. One suffered hearing loss and another fell over a table while evacuating. Heber received a wound to his head from a stray pellet, police said.

One student shot, no deaths, and the boy with the gun lives to receive the help that he so desperately needs.

Now just imagine if instead of understanding and compassion, this young man had been met with a hail of gunfire from an armed teaching staff trained to respond to violence with an increased level of violence. Imagine how many dead bodies may have resulted from such a scenario.

EVERY circumstance is different, but in this one perhaps the worst possible choice would have been an armed response.  Instead this young man received exactly what he needed, trained professionals who valued HIS life as much as the lives of their other students, and who placed themselves in harm's way to protect both.

By the way I heard on MSNBC that his school indeed HAD an officer on duty, but he was caught in a snowstorm and was not available to deal with this potentially deadly situation. Though the armed student had no way to know that, which should put to rest the argument that people only open fire in places where there are "Gun Free Zone" signs posted.


  1. Sally in MI2:50 AM

    A snowstorm? In California? Where is this school?
    Anyway, bravo to the teachers for talking not shooting. And boo to anyone, anyone who wants our schools to become just like those NRA-approved, Army-approved video games. Life is not a game. People don't get shot and walk away. They die. Forever. Guns kill.

    1. Anonymous5:59 AM

      California is a big state. It isn't all LA. There are mountain ranges. There are places you can't even get to after about October. It snows in California.

    2. Anonymous6:50 AM

      FYI- there is a major section of the 5 Freeway that runs through Cali -

      and the GRAPEVINE is notorious for closing due to bad weather (snow) and trapping truckers and other vehicles for hours.

      We got it all here! :)

  2. Anonymous3:29 AM

    One point you hint at but don't come out and say directly is this: Even though the shooter KNEW an armed guard was most likely on campus he still brought a weapon and shot people. Having an armed guard there did NOTHING to prevent or deter this kid.
    Epic fail, NRA, your reason for arming teachers and janitors just got "shot" down.

  3. Anonymous5:35 AM

    Caveman Representative Bob Lynn (R-Anchorage) has introduced legislation (all without the help of ALEC) that leaves the decision of whether teachers or other school employees are armed in the schools to the school administrators.

    1. Anonymous11:45 AM

      Here in Anchorage a family member is an elementary school teacher who has a certifiably disturbed kid in his class. The staff who has worked with this kid since kindergarten knows how dysfunctional this kid's family and all of his siblings are. The kid is begging to be beaten up or worse by calling bigger kids faggots and racially charged names. He was beaten up again last week. My family member gets no help from the principal, who actually has been known to laugh when told of the disturbed kid's latest behaviors. My family member is documenting everything and tells us to not be surprised if something really awful comes of this. Ya think I want this principal deciding whether to arm employees in his school? Ya think I have any respect for his judgement?

  4. Anonymous5:42 AM

    Ohio armed janitors will have reason to think first before shooting, after all, they will be the ones expected to clean up the mess.

    1. Anonymous6:56 AM

      OH. Snap!

      I actually work with a man who was working at a firing range when a man came in --and SHOT himself in the head!

      Because the owner of the gun store/shooting range was, well, evil - IMO - he had my FRIEND clean up the dead man's blood and brains after the body was removed by the city.

      (Little known fact - you have to pay to have "cleanup services" performed after something like this. The city/coroner will only take the body. Blood, brain matter, urine, feces -- Congratulations! You get to clean that up yourself or pay $400 [I forget, it was a few hundred])

      My friend was handed a bag of sawdust and told to go to work.

      "Even better"? the man's WIFE came to the gun range and YELLED AT MY FRIEND!!! my Friend who witnessed this horrible event!

      My poor friend actually yelled at the woman in anger. The poor man had to go to counseling to attempt to wrap his mind around the numerous thoughts and feelings about the event.

      Crazy, huh?

  5. Anonymous6:18 AM

    And the teacher and counselor are, most probably, union members. Every time there is a disaster or a life-threatening crisis most of the responders are union members and yet these people have been vilified by corporate America for decades now. Time for a change in all of that.
    I say "Hooray" for the teacher and the counselor who did their jobs to perfection in that classroom! May the rest of us be as brave and compassionate as they.

    1. Anonymous9:52 AM

      Funny how the right doesn't trust those heinous union thug teachers to teach their little darlings reading, math, social studies and science without a dozen layers of oversight and supervision. However, they want to arm them with weapons and trust them to be able to respond with appropriate levels of deadly force in a crisis situation, while simultaneously protecting the rest of the students around them.

      Can't trust them with a spelling list but let's give them handguns.

      Anyone besides me see a contradiction here???

      (And, yes, I'm one of those union thug teachers!)

  6. Anonymous6:35 AM a perfect world we could just sit down with crazy people who use guns to kill others and just talk it out. Give me a break! As a parent of two elementary school kids, if I found out that my kids died at the hands of a crazy person while the teachers were trying to "talk" him out of it, and make him feel better about himself.....Nonsense. Bring a gun to school and shoot someone, then YOU GET SHOT AND DIE. PERIOD! That is what is wrong with this 'feel-good' society. No one is expected to be held accountable for their behavior. Hopefully there is at least one brave teacher in every school who is willing to carry a gun and protect our kids. If only someone would have "TALKED NICE" to the Sandy Hook killer. Maybe he would have put his gun down and they could all hold hands and sing happy songs.

    1. Anonymous6:57 AM

      What if you found out your kid was shot ACCIDENTALLY BY A TEACHER who was TRYING to hit the "Bad guy" -

      but due to human nature, fear, adrenaline, lack of training, etc. -

      they accidentally shot YOUR kid?

      Feel better, genius?

    2. Anita Winecooler8:32 AM

      No one even brought up the idea of letting the perpetrator go scott free. Is there any other solution beside bringing arms on school property?
      The reason I ask is this:
      Our son's school had "Career Day", and one of the "careers" was "Law Enforcement". The police officer did his speech, lingered around awhile and answered questions, and when the presentation was through, he went back to work.
      A half hour after he left, an unholstered, loaded service revolver was found by a student on a radiator in the rest room.

      What would have happened if a "curious" student accidentally killed my son/your son/ someone else's son?

    3. I beg you to please home school your child.

  7. Anonymous8:02 AM

    Connecticut and California. Two different scenarios entirely.

    One was a mad man determined to kill as many people as possible before he killed himself.

    The other was a kid who wanted to kill just the two that was bullying him. It appears that he did not want to kill himself or anyone else and really wanted a way out of the mess.

    The first case there was no chance of talking to him. The second was a troubled boy who just wanted to end the torment.

  8. Anita Winecooler8:23 AM

    This story illustrates WHY we should implement an assault weapon ban. If this kid had the ability to shoot 30 rounds a second, the chances that this type of intervention would have been impossible. The kid had to take the time to reload, aim, etc. and with those few seconds between each shot, he had a chance to stop and think. Gave the adults a chance to intervene.
    And no one's right to own a gun was taken away.
    Saving just one child's life is heroic, the teacher and counselor probably saved a lot more that day! I hope all involved get help in dealing with what happened.

  9. Anonymous9:03 AM

    Lucky teacher. This time!

  10. Anonymous10:09 AM

    At least you admit the shooter needs help. It would have helped, for starters, if his bullies had been stopped and held accountable sooner for their actions. This kid might not have felt he had no other choice than to take matters into his own hands. The system failed him. (And yes I know he had other options. I'm just talking about how he felt because his feelings of helplessness are what set him off)

    Meanwhile from Great Briton......

  11. Anonymous11:16 AM

    So the shooter didn't know the armed guard was absent that day? Hmmmmm, if somebody was going to shoot up a school some would think that he would choose a day that the armed guard was absent. I mean, just sayin ya know. Just sayin that this shooting doesn't work all that well for either side all that good does it! Move on folks, no spin here.

  12. Anonymous3:16 PM

    I had some crazy@ss teachers in junior and senior high school, and would not have wanted any of them to be packing. Hell naw!

  13. Scientist or not - if you still believe u need to choose between the twoyou are still a mind controlled sheep


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