Pennsylvania’s school district just came up with a new way of dealing with mass shooting incidents which involves arming teachers and school staff with tiny baseball bats as last resort in event of an emergency situation.
Parents and students are criticizing the new ‘gun control’ method by saying that the bats are not really worth the cost and they certainly won’t protect anyone from an armed shooter.
Baseball Bats: The New Weapon of Choice
Ever since the Parkland shooting incident, where a 19-year-old armed shooter entered a high school and killed 17 innocent people, school districts around the country are exploring new security and safety measures to make educational institutions safer for students and teachers alike. Millcreek Township School District in Pennsylvania decided to arm their teachers with small baseball bats so that they’re able protect themselves if ever confronted with a shooter.
The school district’s superintendent, William Hall, says that even though the bats aren’t the ideal weapon to prevent shooting incidents, they are symbolic in a way that they give teachers something to fight back with so that they don’t just act like ‘sitting ducks’ when a shooter barges into the school.
Still Better Than Nothing
The wooden bats, 18 inches in height, are the new combat weapon for school teachers who previously had to rely on turning off the lights and hiding under the tables in an emergency event, hoping that the armed shooter won’t be able to see them. Hall says that hiding is simply not a good enough defense method and teachers will have to fight back if they need to, in which case, the small baseball bats can come in handy.
The $3 baseball bats are no match for a real gun but Hall believes that with the right training, teachers may be able to find them useful in disarming the gunman.
Although, no one is really sure if the new method will make any difference in event of an active shooter, the teachers’ union believes that it is somewhat of an improvement from the old policy where teachers were simply advised to lock the classroom doors, turn off the lights and wait for the shooter to barge in and systematically kill everyone.
Parents Criticize School District’s Decision
In a school district of more than 7,000 students, 18-inch baseball bats aren’t an adequate security measure to protect students from a potential shooting incident, many parents argued.
People on the internet have also showed skepticism towards the decision to arm teachers with bats, saying that there are more powerful methods of making schools safer, such as better architectural designs for school buildings, layers of zoning, and safe rooms made with concrete to prevent bullets from penetrating, alarm systems and bullet-proof glass.
Of course, these methods are going to cost more than the $3 bat, but at the end of the day, the precious lives of students and teachers are worth more than anything else.
Bonnie Fagan, mother of a high school graduate from Millcreek Township says that she was shocked and disappointed to find out the that the district spent money on something as useless as miniature baseball bats when they could have found more effective ways to make schools safer. Fagan said that as the Parkland shooting incidents slowly slips from people’s memories, they are falling back into the false sense of security until the tragedy repeats itself.
Part of a Bigger Effort
The idea of distributing bats among 470 teachers in Millcreek Township School District was approved after an online survey revealed that most parents would prefer if schools had armed first responders in event of a shooting situation.
Hall said that the baseball bats are currently locked up in school buildings and will only be handed out to teachers in an emergency lockdown scenario. The district is currently looking into other measure to make schools more secure such as building concrete barriers and scheduling regular police patrols in all 10 schools in the district.