LBCC discusses arming teachers

Story by Alberto Nunez Photos by Maila Bringas

Peaceful, but Concerned: Students walk around freely at the LAC on Wednesday, Feb, 28, amid discussion about the shooting in Florida

Trump’s conservative suggestion stirs debate on campus, with some agreeing and some opposed.

LBCC students, teachers and the police are talking about what they thought of President Trump’s suggestion about teachers being able to conceal and carry a firearm, during school hours.

Jose Hereora, 21, a computer engineering major, said “Teachers with military and firearms experience should be able to conceal and carry. It is the same danger with anybody else holding a firearm, people do not know if somebody is holding a firearm these days.”

Hereora added, “At least it is in the hands of somebody who is trained and has good intentions. If a teacher has a conceal-and-carry permit, she or he should be able to get a bonus. If a teacher is willing to put her or his life on the line, why not reward them. If a teacher is legally able to hold a weapon in the U.S., a problem should not exist.”

Shadia Gomez, 19, a criminal psychology major, said, “I don’t think they should carry a weapon, someone always have a way to get the weapon on campus. Sometimes when people are from the military, some of them start to suffer from mental health issues due to combat. If a teacher does get a conceal-and-carry permit, then they should get a bonus because they are putting their lives on the line. Instead of teachers being armed, schools should employ police officers working at the school. Some schools do not have police presence. “

She added, “Some schools just have one security guard on duty and they are not armed. Gomez some students will feel intimidated if their teachers have a gun.”

An teacher at LBCC who did not want to be identified for privacy reasons, said, “It is not a teacher’s job to give an opinion on a political view because teachers are here to teach and they are not to influence what their students should think.”

She added, “I want my office to be a safe space where anyone could be able talk to me without feeling the need to hold back, students think their teachers might have a different view on a certain issue. Society does not have one quick-fix solution to school shootings. It is something that needs to be discussed by both sides pertaining to teachers being able to conceal and carry.”

LBCC’s police Lt. Jeff Liberman said, “The police department cannot take sides in a political issue, LBCC is fortunate to be protected 24/7 by the our government.”

Liberman said, “That his unit can request a heavily armed and trained SWAT squad quickly and call in K-9 units. The police department is trained every day and trains with the fire department for school shootings. We try to look at each issues and not as a whole. The police department talks with its teachers and students regularly and if they feel threatened, we will investigate the concern.”

Liberman added, “We also try to help and find people with mental health issues before anything bad happens. The people are provided the mental-health assistance at LBCC.”

Wary Eyes: Officer. C. Chi watches over the Central Quad in his police car Wednesday, Feb, 28, as students debate whether teachers should be armed.