School security

The school shooting at Parkland, Florida that resulted in the death of 17 students and teachers was a terrible and painful tragedy. There were many opportunities that should have stopped Nickolas Cruz from carrying out what he did. Many people want to blame the AK15 for these deaths. Many others want to blame the FBI and the sheriff’s department for failure to follow up. many others want to blame the lack of gun control. The truth is the AK15 was not arrested, but Nickolas Cruz was. The FBI and the sheriff’s department appear to have fallen short of what was expected of them. Every threat should be received and checked out immediately (good follow-up is a must).

Nickolas Cruz was the cause of these deaths, not the instrument used. When students make threats or continually cause trouble, we should have military schools to place them in. When a young person continually causes trouble in our schools, they are not learning and they are interrupting the learning of their classmates.

In the late sixties, I was a Military Policeman in San Francisco, California. We had a serial killer (who called himself “the Zodiac”) who killed several people using different weapons. In 1969 he killed a taxi driver by cutting his throat with a knife. He mailed a bloody tee shirt in a box that contained a letter to the San Francisco Police Department stating that he had rather kill people than animals. He also stated that his next victims would be a school bus load of kids. We took immediate action by securing the schools and the busses. The San Francisco Police, Military Police, CHP, FBI, and many other departments worked together (by riding the busses and by patrols in the front and rear of each bus). We continued with our tight security until I finished my service in 1970.

All knives were not banned because of a killer who killed with a knife. When 911 happened, all airplanes (927s and bigger) were not banned. When terrorists killed people by running them down with big trucks, all big trucks (at or above three-quarter tons) were not banned. When soldiers get killed in battle, we don’t ban their weapons or take their bullets away from them.

The guilty are the ones who use any devise to kill innocent people. Our Forefathers wrote the second amendment for a reason. Good people need weapons to protect their families and country. Many actors and house and senate representatives would like to see America disarm. A Soviet Union leader in the 1960s once stated that they would take America without firing a shot. The only way for this to happen would be to disarm us first. This seems to be what the liberal left desires to do. They think they can afford to limit guns because they can afford to hire security guards to protect themselves. The towns across our country that have strict gun laws have more murders than the ones that are without these controls. Illegal guns are just as hard to control as illegal drugs.

The quick response in San Francisco (by the armed officers) prevented the serial killer from carrying out his treat. I believe that if the Parkland school had more armed personnel in their school that Nickolas Cruz would never have attacked. Robbers and murderers have a tendency to commit their crimes where there is no security or lack of security.

We need to secure our schools by all means available. This includes more resource officers, and any teacher who is qualified and desires to take this responsibility. I believe that if the coach who gave his life protecting the young people had a weapon, that the results could have been different. Looking back on my school years, I believe only a very small percentage of teachers will qualify and they must be willing and must be well trained.

Security officers along with metal doors, bullet proof glass, automatic locking doors, metal detectors, limited access, etc. are the things that schools need. Our schools need the same protections that are being used at our airports. All state governors need to act quickly to secure all schools in their states. They can’t afford to wait for congress. Quick and visible security is very important.

Leon Chavers
Walnut Hill, Fla.