Because it costs a lot of money

Every year Sidwell Friends School has X number of students who would make an appealing kidnap target for political crazies, major criminal organizations and rogue states. This is independent of whether the President specifically decides to send his kids there. Parents who choose the Sidwell School therefore pay $34,000 per kid (plus fees) to ensure new books and computers, keep mold off the wallpaper and Legionnaire’s out of the air vents and, also, to pay armed security to watch the front gates. Public schools spend about $10k per year per student. If we want armed guards in every public school, great! Put a line for it in the tax code. No doubt the NRA will jump right on that plan.






81 replies
  1. 1

    We could tax gun and ammunition sales to increase funding for public schools…

  2. 2
    2liberal says:

    what are the gun safety provisions in that school?

  3. 3
    22over7 says:

    I think I read that Dana Milbank’s kids go there. Maybe we should ask him about the ad.

  4. 4
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Certified Mutant Enemy: You beat me to it.

  5. 5
    brettvk says:

    @Certified Mutant Enemy: I like this, particularly if we can make it retroactive to November 2008, when the big uptick in gun/ammo sales started. Obamahate could reimburse the bank bailout.

  6. 6
    aimai says:

    My father went to sidwell friends, back in the day–I doubt very much that there have always been armed guards there. I also went to private school and my children go to private schools–while there is more “security” than there used to be–door buzzers and check ins and even secretaries with sheets of paper–these are aimed at the most common dangers for kids: angry parental custody disputes, lost kids, truant kids, drug dealers, theft of school equipment.

    The idea that a single armed guard could prevent the kind of mass shootings we’ve had depends on a complete misunderstanding of the nature of violent predators and of schools and other large institutions. They simply can’t be hardened against a determined attack without being turned into prisons. By their nature schools have to have lots of egress points, the windows can’t be barred, fire exits are required. A public school which has to accept all children within a given region may have parents who are themselves felons or mentally ill (private schools have them too but have the option of kicking the kid out to avoid dealing with the parent). One armed guard at a single egress/ingress point is just something to be avoided by a canny shooter–it won’t prevent anything.

    As for the Obama girl’s secret service protection their job is, in fact, quite easy. They know exactly what the target would be and they act as if the target is targeted 24 hours a day. That level of vigiliance can’t be maintained by a single armed guard or even a guard company that isn’t also watching the school 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Hell, even I could smuggle weapons into a school if that were all that were preventing me from storming the school during school hours. Again: that level of protection would be financially crippling for any school system, especially US schools where they are resorting to begging the teachers for paper and other supplies.

  7. 7
    The Dangerman says:

    I’d argue that each K12 student that had a threat against them have Secret Service protection; the NRA will surely support that line item in the budget per their video. Why should we only have janitors armed, probably for no extra pay (going from unstopping the shitters to stopping the shooter(s) makes no sense at all).

  8. 8
    Xantar says:

    As someone suggested in a previous thread, if every gun owner was required to pass the same strenuous physical tests, psychological evaluations, and background checks as the Secret Service and recertify their proficiency with their weapon every year or more often as required, I would be probably be ok with them carrying on school grounds. If those were the only people in the country who had guns, the murder rate wouldn’t disappear, but it would certainly plummet a good amount.

  9. 9
    JasonF says:

    I for one, applaud the NRA’s position that every American is entitled to full healthcare provided by the best doctors the navy can provide (just like the President has), a private aircraft (just like the President has), and a taxpayer-provided mansion (just like the President has).

  10. 10
    Machine-Gun Preacher (formerly Ben Franklin) says:

    You know what costs alot?

    Special Ed in public schools. So much so, that the strapped districts are loathe to inform parents of options. At times, they must be dragged into a lawsuit before curriculums and instruction are provided. But, cart before the horse, as the proffered agenda.

  11. 11
    Kristin says:

    O/T: The International Association of Chiefs of Police support the President’s proposals. http://theiacpblog.org/2013/01/16/1708/

    How is the “Tough on Crime” crowd going to rationalize that?

  12. 12
    Soonergrunt says:

    And Sasha and Malia Obama need Secret Service protection because their father is the President of the United States. They are at risk because of who their father is, and conversely we are all at risk of their harm because of what it might do to the nation’s President.
    My daughter, on the other hand, seems to be at risk simply because she is a public junior-high school student. And the NRA is quite fine with that.

    In fact, the NRA does everything possible to increase the risk to my daughter.

  13. 13
    Lex says:

    My daughter’s high school has had an armed cop stationed there daily for a decade. But it’s a big school — 2,000 students — and a sprawling campus with a lot of old buildings. One suicidal guy with the right weapon, some 100-round drums and a couple of chains and padlocks could wipe out a village of teens before the metro PD could do a damn thing about it. Multiply that by roughly 20 other public and private high schools in my county alone.

    This is not a problem that armed guards are going to stop.

  14. 14
    GregB says:

    I propose the school change tactics and protect the student with cars and hammers.

    According to my gun nut friends these are a much more deadly deterrent.

  15. 15
    Soonergrunt says:

    @Kristin: by not giving a shit about that fact.

  16. 16
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    One of the issues here is threat assessment. Indeed, Sidwell Friends counts among its students the children of high profile parents who are logical targets by determined individuals. If the Obama kids were going to a local public school, they’d still be high value target type kids because of who their parents are, and there’d be increased security at that school for that reason, beyond the SS detail.

    This is true of any school the children of the President might attend, or of various high government officials or…dare I say it…the grandchildren of say W. Mittens Romney who would be dandy kidnap victims. In a celebrity crazed society like ours, these people need some security arrangements above and beyond contingency planning for your crazed member of the NRA out to commit suicide by cop and take as many innocents along with them as they can.

    Also, I join JasonF in commending the NRA’s position that logically extends to health care, private aircraft, motorcades, and a big fucking house in DC for everyone!

  17. 17

    @Kristin: It has “International” in it. Prolly some frenchies in there or sumthin.

  18. 18
    Jay C says:

    @aimai:

    One armed guard at a single egress/ingress point is just something to be avoided by a canny shooter–it won’t prevent anything.

    Gee, ya think??

    Unfortunately, the “arguments” advanced by the NRA and miscellaneous gun nuts (“retarded” arguments would be more appropriate) are pitched – like it or not – mainly in equal parts to peoples’ fears, prejudices and (media-influenced) fantasies. The last, usually a variant on the “gun-totin’ hero” meme our culture has been soaked in since about forever. It’s an attractive dream, and, for the most part, rather disconnected from reality: but still sells better than mundane logic.

  19. 19
    Elizabelle says:

    Do you think some of the NRA’s supporters in Congress are trying to talk Wayne LaPierre down?

    The “president’s daughters” ad was stupid of a sort that you don’t see that often. As in point and laugh territory.

    Who’s the mole in the NRA media department that let that one out for a walk?

  20. 20
    Kristin says:

    @Soonergrunt: This is probably correct. For them, holding completely contrary positions is completely acceptable, because they don’t really have principles. They just say whatever they think they need to to get what they want.

  21. 21
    Kristin says:

    @ranchandsyrup: Yeah, can’t listen to a bunch of surrender monkeys on the subject of guns!

  22. 22
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Kristin:

    Never forget that the NRA’s primary mission always has been to advocate more firearms because they’re a lobby for the firearms and ammunition industries. Move product…no matter what the consequences. A climate of fear is perfect for these guys, and they do whatever they need to do to facilitate that climate.

  23. 23

    @Kristin: you can, if you hate ‘murica and believe that french fries come from belgium.

  24. 24
    libarbarian says:

    Why the hell didn’t Obama call their bluff and announce a new plan to put “armed federal agents in your local public schools by the end of 2016”? Starting with the Red counties first of course.

  25. 25
    Kristin says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: I was less referring to the cynical NRA and more to their paranoid, pants-wetting, WATB useful idiots.

  26. 26
    Kristin says:

    @ranchandsyrup: Or if you support Obamahitler.

  27. 27
    libarbarian says:

    @aimai:

    One armed guard at a single egress/ingress point is just something to be avoided by a canny shooter–it won’t prevent anything.

    Avoided … or surprised and eliminated first.

  28. 28
    scav says:

    @libarbarian: “armed federal agents in your local public schools by the end of 2016″ arriving in black helicopters.

  29. 29
    aimai says:

    @Jay C:

    I know. I’ve been thinking a lot about the talismanic power of guns in this culture and what they are supposed to be able to do, or to signify, as opposed to what they can actually do. Look at how hysterical the gun owners of America became as soon as a list of their houses was published in NY? All of a sudden these people who are arguing that an armed America is a polite America and “This House Doesn’t Call 911” is a better sign that “gun free zone” are pissing their pants because they realize that being a target, even an armed target, is a scary place to be. When these assholes buy guns they imagine themselves strapped and ready for a fight. But their imaginary attacker is always at a disadvantage–stupid, unprepared, back turned, slow draw, lesser firepower. If you gave a moments thought to the size and sprawl of an American Mall or Highschool you’d realize that armed guards are basically just a token, no better than a sign saying “please don’t shoot us.” But they refuse to admit that because the entire basis of the market is selling weapons to people who also can’t acknowledge that unless you are armed every fucking moment, with your finger on the trigger and a bullet in the chamber, you can still be picked off by someone who sneaks up behind you and decides to kill you five seconds before you decide to kill them.

  30. 30
    Chris says:

    @scav:

    Part of me thinks it’d be funny to plant rumors that the reason the Obammunists staged the Sandy shooting was so that we’d all install armed guards in school, as a tool of the One-World Government to control the population by holding their kids hostage.

    … but, that would probably just encourage all the NRA people to go camp out in front of the schools with their own guns and maybe even attack the armed guards.

  31. 31
    Hoodie says:

    I saw that drivel on Sully’s site and laughed my ass off. A typical rent a cop security guard would likely have been victim #27 at Newtown. Private schools like Sidwell Friends are not protecting against rogue gunmen with massive amounts of firepower who don’t care if they live or die. Private schools are pretty much as vulnerable to that as public schools, unless they want be set up like FOBs in Afghanistan, which wouldn’t go over too well with the well-heeled parents. The Secret Service detail guarding the Obama girls is not there to protect other Sidwell Friends students. They’re expendable.

  32. 32
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @Kristin:

    In the case of one of the members of their Board of Directors, “pants-wetting” is the literal truth.

  33. 33
    Chris says:

    @aimai:

    When these assholes buy guns they imagine themselves strapped and ready for a fight.

    … until something happens that moves the possibility of a fight from “fantasy that keeps playing in my head” to “actually potentially a real thing.” Then, as you point out, they flip a shit and realize they might not be cut out for this after all.

  34. 34
    Punchy says:

    In TN, they want to arrest any Feds who attempt to enforce federal laws. Also, too Mizzou wants in on the action.

    I understand this is grandstanding, or is it? Do they not care that such laws are DOA, or honestly dont know it? If it’s the latter……whoa boy, is this country fucked.

  35. 35
    j says:

    Can’t raise taxes to pay for the cops in every school.

    Grover Norquist is on the Board of Directors of the NRA.

    His head would explode trying to reconcile the two points.

    (And check out all the “Hollywood elites” he shares that board with:

    http://www.motherjones.com/pol.....eck-nugent

  36. 36
  37. 37
    Jay C says:

    @aimai:

    OK: let’s posit four scenarios here: (substitute “mall” or “office” for “school” if desired)

    A) School full of innocent children is shot up by a violent lunatic with an assault weapon, who then kills himself.

    B) School full of innocent children is shot up by a violent lunatic with an assault weapon, who is then killed by law enforcement.

    C) School full of innocent children is shot up by a violent lunatic with an assault weapon, who is then killed by an armed bystander.

    D) School full of innocent children is saved from being shot up by a violent lunatic with an assault weapon by being preemptively shot by armed hero-bystander.

    Scenarios A) and B) are, sadly, not unknown: I have never heard, myself, of scenarios C) and D) actually ever playing out in real life; but which one, do you think, would be the one that most people are going to think about when the subject of “guns” comes up in public discussion?

  38. 38
    PeakVT says:

    @Kristin: I think what the F.O.P. says matters a lot more, frankly. The average wingnut probably sees the chiefs as a bunch of pointed-headed bureaucrats already.

  39. 39
    aimai says:

    I’d also like to point out that if Sidwell Friends costs 34,000 a year and has an armed guard they are eating the cost of that guard because all the private schools i know in my high COL area cost 34,000 a year *without* any armed guard.

  40. 40
    trollhattan says:

    @j:

    But, I thought the “plan” was to guard schools with volunteer armed Patriots(tm)? We gotta pay them now? That’s no fun.

    To so much as volunteer in the classroom in our school district, you must first be fingerprinted and go through a po-leece background check. I wonder how many armed Patriots(tm) would be willing to undergo such oppression?

  41. 41
    J.W. Hamner says:

    If guns make in necessary to put armed federal agents at every school then it doesn’t seem like they are doing a very good job of protecting us from governmental oppression.

  42. 42
    aimai says:

    @Jay C:

    I agree. One of the most frustrating things to me is that the entire discussion is so backwards. First we hear that “nothing can be done” because X killer “legitimately bought his weapons.” Then we hear that some other killer, like Adam Lanza, couldn’t have been stopped because he “took” the weapons or “stole” them and therefore no laws pertaining to gun ownership could have stopped him. This is so not true.

    If we changed nothing but the laws relating to concealed carry and we permitted very few people to concealed carry the police could stop and take guns away from anyone bringing them near a school or carrying them outside of their houses. Those assholes in Portland would have been arrested already. Adam Lanza could have been arrested–the crazy teacher in Maine was reported because people saw him carrying outside of his house and reported it and then instead of fighting for “his right” to carry he submitted himself for a psych evaluation.

    Who knows how many accidental, negligent, crime of passion/impulse type shootings could be averted by just forcing gun owners to keep their guns registered, unloaded, and at home?

  43. 43
    El Cid says:

    Look, we just can’t ever entirely stop all these deranged individuals from blowing up schools with dynamite.

    So we need to look at more effective ways of blast-proofing the most vulnerable areas of our children’s schools.

  44. 44
    j says:

    @trollhattan: This is the kind of volunteer that will show up to protect the school kids:

    http://wgntv.com/2013/01/14/ma.....k-at-boys/

    The Bieber made me do it!!!~

    And in other wingnut news, Deadbeat Dad Joe Walsh is in talks to get his own radio show on the same station that already has Beck, Hannity, Prager and Dennis Miller.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.....81461.html

  45. 45
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    Here’s the thing about gun ownership:

    You own a deadly weapon, there are certain responsibilities associated with that deadly weapon. A lot of gun owners do not take those responsibilities seriously. Registration of guns is no more intrusive than registration of automobiles, and serves several purposes, none of which involve confiscation. For one thing, you should assume liability for the misuse of your deadly weapon. A lot of gun owners want their fucking toys, but don’t want the liability implied by ownership.

    RESPONSIBLE gun owners should be hot and bothered about irresponsible gun owners fucking things up for them. But they don’t seem to be.

  46. 46
    burnspbesq says:

    If I’m remembering correctly, my high school, which is probably pretty typical of a school that opened in 1906 and was added to several times over the years, has nine entrances. The building is three stories, and the footprint is approximately 1.2 acres. All of those entrances are within 20 meters of a public street that can’t be closed during school hours. No entrance can be seen from any other entrance. There is no perimeter wall, and you couldn’t possibly get zoning permission to build one. Nor could you get permission to cut down any existing trees or hedges to open up fields of fire.

    I’ll let the former infantry folks who comment here address the following question: if you had to secure that building, how big a force would you need?

  47. 47
    trollhattan says:

    @j:
    Jayzuz, haven’t they got a few more charges to fling at this perv? These don’t seem nearly enough. Must. Find. Shower.

    Adamczyk is charged with one count of criminal trespass to land, one count of disorderly conduct

  48. 48
    Mnemosyne says:

    @Machine-Gun Preacher (formerly Ben Franklin):

    Now this I actually do agree with you on — our “special ed” system is a frickin’ disgrace, and there are way too many ways for schools to block access to programs that they decide the kids don’t really need even if you have documentation from multiple doctors showing that, no, your kid does need it. And gawd help you if your kid’s diagnosis changes and you have to convince the school that, no, Jimmy has Asperger’s, not ADHD, so the medication they keep insisting he needs to take isn’t going to help because it’s making him more hyperactive, not less.

    Add in the fact that even “normal” kids may have different learning styles that make it difficult for them to learn in the rote “teach to the test” style that’s being adopted in schools to keep up with the insane standardized testing regimen and it’s pretty much a disaster all around.

  49. 49
    Machine-Gun Preacher (formerly Ben Franklin) says:

    @Mnemosyne:

    We have good friends who have a 5-year old son, mildly autistic. His parents fought tooth and nail, but got the help he needed. He has started speaking in short sentences, and even taught his class the alphabet for 20 minutes, unassisted. But, it is very expensive for the District, and as are all of them, hard-pressed to deal with their budgets.

  50. 50
    Hugely says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: yup this is why I like insurance and liability to be mandated for all firearms and ammunition (maybe). I would assume long guns would have lower insurance (read hunting / sporting) and those that deal human death more often (high capacity magazines) would have higher and possibly prohibitive premiums

  51. 51
    Hugely says:

    @Mnemosyne: lol isnt it great that we are mentioning “fields of fire” in the same topic as schools – and by great I mean fucked up

    no offense to burnsy meant

  52. 52
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @burnspbesq:

    No entrance can be seen from any other entrance.

    However, you might be able to see several entrances from some vantage points on the roof. Which means you might well be able to have interlocking fields of fire on entrances.

    Not that this does much good unless you start shooting at anyone who approaches an entrance.

    Probably would need a full infantry platoon to secure the thing (that’s 40-50 men) with proper guards at the nine entrance points, with reliefs and a strong reserve centrally located. Plus surveillance on all entrances, monitored from where the reserve is situated, which would be the site command post.

    The fact of the matter is, though, it’s overkill. But the NRA’s solution to everything is overkill…without bothering to figure the logistical cost of it all. Having even one infantry squad guarding a school implies a lot of associated expenses beyond just the payroll for the guards. This applies even if you’re not going to go totally batshit insane and have armed infantrymen guarding a school, just local police or other law enforcement. Also there’s the opportunity costs involved…what else could these people being doing with their time, instead of guarding a school that would not need to be guarded if we didn’t have so many fucking weapons out there, in the hands of so many marginally stable people.

  53. 53

    I do salary calculations for a school district as part of my job, and after a little bit of quick math, I came up with an approximate cost of $95,440 a year for one armed guard per school in Miami-Dade County. That’s salary and fringes like taxes and insurance, and that does not include the cost of equipment or ancillary costs such as uniforms. That’s per school, per year, and it does not include overtime or shift differential if they work nights. It’s the fourth-largest district in the country with 354 schools or facilities that would require a guard. It would come to a total of $33,785,583.00 for the entire district. Plus you need to add the indirect cost allowance which is included in every federal grant. The current rate is 3.77%, which amounts to $1,237,716, which brings it to a grand total of $35,059,299.00. That’s for one year.

  54. 54
    JoyfulA says:

    @Villago Delenda Est: President Carter’s youngest child started at her local DC public school. The Secret Service protection (and, no doubt, reporters and looky-loos) created a lot of turmoil in the school, and Amy was transferred to Sidwell Friends.

  55. 55
    Another Halocene Human says:

    Sidwell Friends: the high cost of high inequality

    More equal nations don’t need as much security as this. There is less incentive to attack/demand ransom.

    Furthermore, the fear of such (almost) always outstrips the reality.

    Exception: the French Revolution

  56. 56
    Villago Delenda Est says:

    @JoyfulA:

    Yup, that’s another issue that the NRA fails to grasp.

    Like it or not, those two girls are celebrities through no fault of their own. Their presence in a public school would be disruptive due to that celebrity.

  57. 57
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @aimai: these are aimed at the most common dangers for kids: angry parental custody disputes, lost kids, truant kids, drug dealers, theft of school equipment

    and it’s really only the first that is a danger to the kid, probably more of an issue now because in the past society looked the other way

    #2 and #3 are administration problems, not kid problems
    #4 is overblown at best, fantasy at worst
    #5 is another administration problem

  58. 58
    Kristin says:

    @Mustang Bobby: You need to send this to the NY Times or something. It’s pretty clear that the NRA didn’t think this out. Or else, they think Arpaio’s “volunteer posses” are the way to go.

  59. 59
    Machine-Gun Preacher (formerly Ben Franklin) says:

    @Mustang Bobby:

    Well, a $1000 tax on each round (36,000 total rounds) per year would be the ticket.

  60. 60
    Another Halocene Human says:

    @Jay C: C has happened very, very infrequently. One can find more examples of gun owners or armed people who were there but unable to accomplish anything.

    D is like “minority report”, it’s jungle justice and in any sane world would be considered abhorrent (how did you know that person you gunned down pre-emptively was going to kill anyone?), vs

    E–gun homicide/suicide/accidental death prevented by gun control… just look at the stats in every country, compare to known factors like inequality and total societal violence, also before/after gun control measures… first order effect, baybee.

  61. 61
    ralph says:

    this terrifies me. when there are guns in schools, my children will be home schooled.

  62. 62

    @Kristin: “It’s pretty clear that the NRA didn’t think this out.”

    Your gift for understatement is admirable.

    By the way, I based my assumption on the idea that the schools would pay for this by a federal grant. If the district had to raise that much money on their own, property taxes would go through the roof. So maybe Machine-Gun Preacher (formerly Ben Franklin) is on to something.

  63. 63
    burnspbesq says:

    @Hugely:

    None taken. It is completely ducking ridiculous that we are having this conversation.

  64. 64
    Soonergrunt says:

    @burnspbesq: Well, we do threat assessment and mission resource requirement assessment based upon something called METT-TC, which is an acronym (you know how we love our acronyms) for:
    Mission, Enemy, Terrain and Weather, Troops and Support Available, Time Available, Civil Considerations
    But a facility of the size you are talking about would require an Infantry platoon on site to “secure” it. And that would require an entire rifle company, because while one platoon is on site, another platoon is training offsite and QRF, and a third platoon is down–schools, leave, equipment maintenance, etc.
    The way you’d really do it is to secure three sites at a time with one company for all three, and the other two companies in a rifle battalion in the statuses that I just discussed. You also need command and control, supply, food, laundry, transportation, medical, Operations, Security/Intelligence, maintenance and repair, and a partridge in a fucking pear tree.
    That’s 500 to 800 men to secure three high schools. If you want them secure in the way that military personnel are used to thinking of the term. And all of this presupposes that the platoon that is onsite will LIVE onsite, and by so doing, reduce daily logistics costs. Figure four classrooms surrendered to the SECFOR in the short term, four new trailers in the medium-long term.

  65. 65
    ralph says:

    jesus christ, where are the “like” buttons on these frigging posts?!

  66. 66
    negative 1 says:

    @aimai: I had a friend who went in the 90s. There were then, although I don’t know if it was situation specific or if they just figured it was a good idea.

  67. 67
    Machine-Gun Preacher (formerly Ben Franklin) says:

    Then, there’s Columbine….

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/.....47096.html

  68. 68
    Rathskeller says:

    All of this talk of protecting schools with armed guards is amusing, but a complete distraction. I don’t work at a school, but I travel to work via public roadways, I shop at stores with 50 to 100 people in them, and I have worked at place with angry customers who said things on the phone like “I will kill you” along with co-workers who were fired for bringing guns to work. No one protects me.

    Talking about armed guards anywhere is absolutely nuts. It concedes miles of rhetorical space to these lunatics. It simply needs to be less possible for a person to obtain these killing instruments. Period.

  69. 69
    rea says:

    Dunning-Krueger effect: “a cognitive bias in which unskilled individuals suffer from illusory superiority, mistakenly rating their ability much higher than average. This bias is attributed to a metacognitive inability of the unskilled to recognize their mistakes.”–Wikipedia

    A lot of that at work here among all these people who think they need guns for protection . . .

  70. 70
    danimal says:

    I don’t think conservatives have thought this through.

    Imagine 1 or 2 armed guards at every local school site in the country. Paid for with federal funds. New public employees–hundreds of thousands of them. Many belonging to unions. And armed.

  71. 71
    aimai says:

    @negative 1:

    Well, my father is 80 years old. I am sure that a lot of things changed.

  72. 72
    j says:

    @ralph: @ralph: THAT is the objective. Either home schooled (by Limbaugh listeners) or charter schooled (by religious nuts / anti science freaks).

    Either way it will all be NON UNION.

  73. 73
    PurpleGirl says:

    @trollhattan: Volunteers in NYC public schools have to be fingerprinted, which costs a few hundred dollars each person. The organization I used to work for had a deal with the Department of Education that our volunteers did not have to be fingerprinted because we did our own background checks. (Besides, many if not most of our parent volunteers couldn’t have afforded to pay for fingerprinting and neither could the organization. Forget trying to get a foundation or corporation to pay $50,000-odd a year for it.) We had several different deals with different Chancellors.

  74. 74

    […] For a more cogent point, I refer you to Tim F. over t’Balloon-Juice: […]

  75. 75
    TheOtherWA says:

    This has been bugging me since last night. How do we know Sidwell Friends has armed guards? They have security, yes. But armed?

    I spent quite a while searching for a credible source for that info but could not find it. Plenty of conservative blogs, but not a single news site mentions it, nor does the school’s website. Not that I blame them.

  76. 76

    @TheOtherWA: Being a school founded by Quakers and still working in the Quaker tradition, I kind of doubt that they would have them armed. That would violate one of the basic tenets of Quakerism. They obviously make an exception in the case of the Secret Service, but I don’t think they’d do it on their own.

  77. 77
    Ash says:

    Um I work a couple blocks away from Sidwell Friends. It’s a Quaker school. They definitely don’t have “armed guards.” From what I remember from what my workplace told me, at most they have regular school security guards as well as a few Secret Service members lurking around.

  78. 78
    Pococurante says:

    @Certified Mutant Enemy: I like that idea. Coupled with insurance policy per gun and we’d see a least least one hole in the dike under control.

  79. 79
    Pococurante says:

    @Villago Delenda Est:

    RESPONSIBLE gun owners should be hot and bothered about irresponsible gun owners fucking things up for them. But they don’t seem to be.

    Sure we are.

    But as in most things real life the moderate well-balanced people are more likely to go about living a normal quiet life.

    There’s a reason why NRA membership is a fraction of what it has been per capita since it was founded roughly a hundred fifty years ago.

    The NRA doesn’t have clout through people membership – it has clout from money funneled to it by major gun manufacturers who, by the way, also are up to their neck in the military industrial complex.

    Telling us responsible gun owners that we are responsible to counter this incredibly organized money machine isn’t reasonable.

  80. 80
    Bendal says:

    Too many “soft targets” to try and protect them all with armed guards. Put guards in schools? Fine, the next nutcase attacks a daycare center. Maybe a church, maybe a YWCA, why not a doctor’s office?

    Pretty soon half the population is playing armed guard for the other half. It’s a kneejerk reaction to the shooting and is nothing more than public theater.

  81. 81
    Andrew J. Lazarus says:

    Sidwell does not have armed guards, other than Secret Service protection for the Obama girls. (Joe Biden’s granddaughter also attends, but I don’t think she gets protection.) The Secret Service generally don’t follow the girls to class.

    Why would you believe the NRA about anything?

    I am an alumnus and my sister, also an alumnus, is on the current faculty. Four of my nieces/nephews are enrolled now.

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