Lawmaker may consider allowing some workers to bring weapons on campus

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December 19, 2012 3:45:27 AM PST
Even as stores are restricting the sales of certain guns, some state leaders are calling for laws that allow school staff to carry guns on campus.

State Rep. Debbie Riddle says she would consider legislation that would allow teachers with a concealed carry license to take that gun into school but another state leaders says this debate seems to be cast in two extremes and there can be middle ground.

While in the classroom on Tuesday, teacher Elena Saner was thinking of the victims in Connecticut.

"I just wish I could hug them all and make everything better," Saner said.

For 26 years she's been at De Zavala Elementary, but the idea of anyone besides a police officer carrying a gun inside the school makes her uneasy.

"If teachers were to wield their guns, I think they would get in the way of first responders not knowing who the gunman is," she said.

Texas Land Commissioner Jerry Patterson authored Texas' concealed handgun law in 1995 when he was a state senator. He suggests individuals who are comfortable and trained can provide defense at schools in light of the Sandy Hook shooter's actions.

"He was confronted by a principal and a counselor and he killed them. Had he been confronted by a principal who was competent with a firearm, we might have had a different outcome," Patterson said.

Patterson says that could mean more police officers, administrators or a teacher with a concealed handgun license -- but not everyone.

"You can't just go oh you are the principal, here is your gun," Patterson said.

Riddle says she will consider legislation that would allow a teacher with a concealed carry license to take the gun to school.

Saner believes there's a different way but that school security should always come first.

"Children are the backbone of our society," she said.

The topic is expected to heat up in Austin when the next legislative session begins in January.


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