Blaine cornelius put efforts into security, surveillance of schools columns joplinglobe.com gas 99 cents

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If yesterday there had been a gas leak that led to an explosion killing 17 children, we would have put every measure possible in place in every school in the nation to make sure if it happened again, we could save more lives. If the homecoming king collapsed on the 50-yard line yesterday, 100 brand-new AEDs would be donated to school districts who couldn’t afford them in his name in an effort to save lives.

Yet today, we argue. Half of our nation argues about the atrocities of “gun violence” and the need to ban guns, while the other half argues for the right to keep and bear arms and the use of them in defense of our children. Nothing changes. We will argue until things calm down, and the issue will be put to bed until the next active killing incident.

A smattering of politicians and law enforcement personnel will grace our television sets for the next two weeks telling us how this must stop and they will assure us that, for the safety of our children, every effort to eradicate these tragedies will be employed. This line of thinking is ignorant and sheepish. You can’t stop a tsunami, you must put up a wall. Even so, there will be deaths if the tsunami is of greater force than the integrity of your defense against it.

You cannot eradicate fire. Fire will always be fire. You cannot eradicate the potentiality of sudden cardiac arrest. There aren’t always warning signs such an event will occur. You cannot eradicate the active killer. Until the end of time, there will be individuals with the propensity to commit violence against other human beings.

Fire suppression systems don’t prevent fires, they prevent deaths in fires. Automated external defibrillation doesn’t prevent cardiac arrest, it prevents death from cardiac arrest. “Gun control” doesn’t prevent active killers, and it sure doesn’t prevent death because of active killers. The Second Amendment doesn’t prevent active killers, nor does it prevent death because of active killers, yet that is all we argue. All our efforts and energy are being focused on mitigations which would have no effect on the active killer or the preservation of life.

You can put millions of dollars into mental health research and social media surveillance. You can put millions of dollars into gun buyback programs and efforts to eliminate firearms falling into the wrong hands. I applaud you for your efforts and you might just save a life or two, which is priceless. But if each of you put half a million of those same dollars into mitigating the risks posed by an active killer, how many more lives could we save?

If, in the future, next to every glass-encased fire extinguisher was a ballistic shield that heroes such as coach Aaron Feis could use to engage an active killer, how many lives could potentially be saved? If, instead of $500 iPads, students were issued clear vinyl backpacks with a layer of 4A ballistic Kevlar sewn into them, how many lives could be saved? If, instead of imprinting upon our children and staff the potentiality of them becoming victims, we imprinted the fact that they are all potential weapons, how many lives could be saved? If the same amount of money spent on the football stadium was put into the security and surveillance systems of our schools, how many lives could be saved? What if, just like integrated automatic fire protection, we had the ability to confine an active killer to a certain area of our school with the touch of a button? How many lives could we save by simply recognizing that active killers exist and the only thing we can do about it is to prepare to mitigate their effectiveness?

The future of mitigating the risks associated with active killers is not in the mistakes of our past, including gun control and mental health legislation. It is not in the hands of the talking heads who sensationalize these incidents for profit with their every breath.

The future is not in waiting for legislators or criminal justice practitioners to tell us how we should handle business to save lives. To save lives, we must recognize the threat exists, identify our vulnerabilities, assess our resources to mitigate our vulnerabilities and employ those resources to their fullest extent in order to handicap the effectiveness of active killers. The rest is just political agenda and noise.