- President Donald Trump said teachers and other school officials should be given weapons
- According to the US head of state, arming teachers could prevent another school massacre
- But, people opposing the idea said they do not want to see shoot-outs at schools, adding the lawmakers should apply stricter gun laws
US President Donald Trump suggested in an emotional meeting at the White House that arming teachers could help prevent school massacres.
The meeting followed 17 pupils and teachers losing their lives in a shooting on 14 February, in a Florida high school. Trump spoke with some of the students who survived and a parent of one who did not, Eyewitness News reported.
Trump is known to be pro-gun, with the National Rifle Association backing him in his 2016 presidency campaign.
The US head of state said they plan on doing background checks on all gun buyers and to raise the age limit higher for certain weapons.
In the meeting Trump pointed out how an armed school officials could have scared off a potential attacker, thus preventing such a tragedy.
“If you had a teacher ... who was adept at firearms, it could very well end the attack very quickly,” said Trump.
The most recent shooting incident at a school was on Valentine's Day, when a 19-year-old former student, armed with an AR-15 semi-automatic assault rifle, opened fire on pupils and teachers, killing 17 people.
The incident sparked a long-running debate on gun laws. Although there are parties fighting against citizens owning guns, the US Constitution protects the right of Americans to carry and own weapons.
Trump's remarks sparked mixed reactions, with some people agreeing with him. However, others felt bringing in more guns would worsen the situation.
Mark Barden, who lost his son in a 2012 school shooting, said his wife is a teacher and they carry enough responsibility without having the added responsibility of lethal force to take a life.
“Nobody wants to see a shootout in a school,” Barden said.
One of the student who survived the attack, 18-year-old Sam Zeif said he cannot understand how someone could still go in a store and buy a weapon of war, an AR.
“Let’s never let this happen again, please, please,” an emotional Zeif said.
Andrew Pollack, a parent who lost his 18-year-old daughter in the shooting, said the problem with school shootings should have stopped after the first incident.
"We should have fixed it. And I’m pissed - because my daughter - I‘m not going to see again.”, he shouted.
Prior to the meeting, students across the country protested. Protesters demanded that the laws be amend to restrict sales of assault riffles.
Currently, the US law allows someone as young as 18 to buy an assault rifle. This means America has stricter laws on the minimum age of alcohol use than it has on buying guns. A person under the age of 21 is not allowed to buy alcohol in the States.
One protester pointed out Nikolas Cruz, the teen responsible for the recent school shooting, could buy an assault rifle before buying a beer.
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