Frank Piner: Options to consider on college shootings
November 6, 2015
I have seen many things recently about the Oregon college shooting and have heard people say we need to "do away with the guns." We all have our own opinions on the subject of college shootings and firearms, so instead of trying to provide facts and statistics to carry out a debate, I would like to find a solution for a safer campus.
Personally, I find that it is neither an issue of having more laws or controls, nor is it an issue of enforcing them. My reasoning being, if someone wants to cause damage or harm they are going to find a way to do it regardless of any laws or controls.
Our Second Constitutional Amendment says "A well-regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."
The last part, which I believe are the keywords here (not my favorite words), that I would like to point out is "shall not be infringed." This clearly means the Second Amendment should not be changed (infringed is to break).
The Bill of Rights protects our first 10 Constitutional Amendments from being changed. So instead of trying to change something that can't be, arguing about it, or complaining about it, let's move on from that and work on a solution that will solve this problem.
I have put some thought to a solution of college shootings for a while now. I started out with the idea of putting our teachers through classes on firearm safety and arming them. However, there are several professors out there who I personally would not trust with a firearm because some of them are not comfortable with handling them.
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My second idea was to create more student jobs by offering jobs to only either veterans or prior law enforcement to carry a firearm on campus while attending college. They would have to be either a prior law enforcement officer or a veteran.
Next they would have to be interviewed and go through a polygraph test. Polygraph tests are designed to tell the administer of the polygraph if the person taking the test is being truthful or not, which is crucial to discovering if the applicant has integrity.
Then the applicant must have an extensive background check and if they pass that, be put through training on becoming a reserve police officer. However, some people may want to be a reserve police officer while attending college who have never been prior law enforcement or veterans. This brings me to my final and third solution.
In order to solve the problem of college shootings, I believe that the college boards of education and the local police departments should have a meeting. Why not open up the job to any student, professor, or staff member who fits the qualification requirements of a reserve police officer?
Applicants who want to become reserve police officers will go through the same screening process and training that full-time police officers go through, some of which includes, but not limited to an intensive background check, polygraph test, medical check, and police training.
After becoming a reserve police officer, the student/professor/staff member would serve their reserve time at the college by fulfilling their duties while at the college. Finally, they would offer a new level of security to the college environment. I personally believe this would greatly reduce the risk of future shooting at colleges.
I hope to make a positive change in society and create a learning environment free from danger. I know it will take a lot for our country to try something new and for local schools or colleges to change their ways.
I know this has been instituted at other schools and has proven to be effective. I would like to see the option of being a reserve police officer take place while attending college before another future event takes place. I wish that we would try to find a solution instead of complaining about our current situation.
I believe officers on campus is a valid solution to the public danger we face, where our learning environment can be successful without losing another life.
Frank Piner lives in Penn Valley.