Like all of you, I was saddened and frustrated by the most recent school shooting that occurred in Uvalde, Texas on Tuesday, May 24, 2022. We must continue to work to find solutions, rather than using divisive rhetoric. Many of my colleagues are accusing others of not caring for children unless they agree with their policy position of gun control and confiscation. Robbing individuals of their rights will not stop these tragedies as criminals will continue to violate these laws. If gun laws worked, the gun-free zone would’ve stopped this shooting. The school shooter passed the background checks that were already in place.
The questions we should be asking should not be “When can we ban rifles?” but should instead be “What type of protections did the school have?” and “Was the school properly prepared to respond?” When these tragedies occur, schools must be ready to deal with threats swiftly and effectively.
I have been working with Rep. Bob Bezotte and others on the introduction of House Bills 6151 and 6152, which will increase school security. Under this legislation, principals must allow at least three school employees the option to carry a firearm or taser within the school as long as the weapon is stored in a lockbox that has a two-lock process.
These bills are the first step toward protecting our students and I eagerly await the process of discussing with parents, school boards, and sheriffs how to better prepare our schools for threats. We will never be able to rid the world of evil and criminals will continue to get their hands on firearms while law-abiding civilians are disarmed. These bills change the tone of the conversation to offer a solution that balances our constitutional right to keep and bear arms while simultaneously offering the best answer to quickly neutralize school threats and act as a deterrent.